Saturday 28 May 2022
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Pakistan auctions luxury cars, helicopters, buffalo to cut costs

The cars that are being auctioned include four recent models of Mercedes Benz, eight bullet-proof BMWs, three 5000cc SUVs and two 3000cc SUVs of 2016 model

Islamabad: The sale of bulletproof luxury vehicles, helicopters and even eight buffalo drew hundreds of curious onlookers but few buyers to an “austerity-drive” held by the Pakistani government this week.

The auction, which was intended to earn as much as $16 million to help fill Pakistan’s coffers, netted just $600,000 on Monday.

More than 100 used cars were on the block at the government’s heavily-publicized fire sale. But many of the vehicles were far from ritzy, and some had been purchased as far back as the 1980s.

Only 62 vehicles found buyers, the most expensive of them a bulletproof 2015 Toyota Land Cruiser that was sold for $200,000. Four bulletproof 2005 Mercedes jeeps were also purchased, but more than a dozen other Mercedes and seven BMWs remained unsold.

Speaking to reporters on Monday, Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry said the first batch of 70 vehicles has been sold successfully.

He added that vehicles which are classified as protected (bomb and bullet-proof) would be auctioned next.

The cars that are being auctioned include four recent models of Mercedes Benz, eight bullet-proof BMWs, three 5000cc SUVs and two 3000cc SUVs of 2016 model.

Twenty-four Mercedes Benz of 2016 model is also being auctioned. Two of the 28 cars are 4,000cc bullet-proof vehicles, the report said.

Further, 40 Toyota cars, a Lexus SUV, and two Land Cruisers are also up for auction.

Other vehicles that are being auctioned include eight Suzuki cars, five Mitsubishi vehicles, nine Hondas and two jeeps.

The cars will be sold to those who have the highest bid, the report said.

In his first address to the nation, Prime Minister Khan had emphasised on cutting government expenditure. As part of the cost-cutting initiative, he had announced the of surplus PM House vehicles.

Pakistan’s debt and liabilities rose sharply to nearly Rs 30 trillion or 87% of the total size of the economy at the end of the previous fiscal year, according to media reports.

Statistics released by the Bank of Pakistan (SBP) last month showed that in the last five years, Pakistan’s total debt and liabilities increased Rs 13.5 trillion or 82.8% to stand at Rs 29.9 trillion. Five years ago, Pakistan’s total debt and liabilities were Rs 16.4 trillion.

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