By ZARAR KHAN
ISLAMABAD (AP) — The International Monetary Fund has agreed to provide $3 billion to Pakistan — a badly needed relief to bail out the impoverished country’s ailing economy. In a statement issued late Thursday, a top IMF official said the nine-month agreement must be approved by the IMF’s Executive Board, which is expected to make a final decision in mid-July. The new proposed package is higher than what Pakistan was expecting. Pakistan’s economy has faced several heavy blows, including last summer’s floods that killed over 1,500 people and caused $30 billion in damage. The cash-strapped government is struggling to avoid a default.