Pakistan has leased the iconic Roosevelt Hotel to the New York City government for three years, helping the cash-strapped nation earn $220. million out of the bargain. Pakistan’s Aviation Minister Khawaja Saad Rafiq said Sunday that the New York administration will pay rent of up to $210 for each of the 1,025 rooms in the century-old hotel owned by state-run Pakistan International Airlines.
The hotel had to be closed due to financial losses after the coronavirus pandemic in 2020. Pakistan’s finance ministry said in a statement last month that it would now be used by the New York City government for its “immigrant housing business.” The development comes as Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif attempts a bailout from the International Monetary Fund to avoid default amid the country’s depleting foreign exchange reserves.
Pakistan was spending $25 million a year on taxes and salaries even after the hotel closed. The Nation expects the deal will help it clear all of its obligations, including the $66 million settlement claimed by the hotel association. Earlier, Deloitte had recommended that the best use of the property be to redevelop the site into mixed use through a joint venture.


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