New York, NY (BBN)- The International Monetary Fund (IMF) and Pakistan have agreed to an assistance package worth $7.6 billion to help the Asian country combat the worst effects of the global financial turmoil.

IMF staff and Pakistani authorities reached the agreement on the 23-month standby arrangement on Saturday, according to a press release issued by the Fund, which said the package falls under the institution’s emergency financing mechanism procedures.

IMF Managing Director Dominique Strauss-Kahn said in the statement that the agreement had been struck after Pakistan developed a policy package to help the country meet its serious balance of payments difficulties.

“The authorities’ program has two main objectives: to restore the confidence of domestic and external investors by addressing macroeconomic imbalances through a tightening of fiscal and monetary policies; and to protect the poor and preserve social stability through a well-targeted and adequately funded social safety net,” Mr. Strauss-Kahn said.

The IMF has recently provided a series of financing agreements to help countries in need, including Hungary and Ukraine.

BBN/SI/SS/AD-18November08-11:05 AM (BST)