Pakistan has missed countless opportunities for economic development.

Dr Muhammad Hanif Mughal, Chairman of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Shadbad, said on Friday that Pakistan has lost numerous chances to grow economically. Politicians and bureaucracy tend to scare away investors, which should be changed; that is critical for the success of Saudi investment, he added. In a statement issued today, Dr Muhammad Hanif Mughal said that no other country has as many opportunities as Pakistan to boost the economy. Still, all such opportunities have been wasted due to vested interests.

He observed that our politicians and bureaucracy are experts in driving away investors, a major obstacle to investment and national development. He said that now, the friendly country of Saudi Arabia wants to invest billions of dollars in Pakistan, which should be allowed to succeed. 

Riyadh is particularly interested in investing in the agricultural sector; nevertheless, energy projects were also addressed during the discussions between the high-ranking officials of both countries. He said Saudi investors and investments should be protected and allowed to work freely so other countries could follow suit to invest in Pakistan.

Apart from this, people and institutions who have stopped investments in Pakistan should be consulted to find and correct the problems discouraging investors. 

He said Saudi investors and their investments should be protected from problems, which is crucial for Pakistan’s economic stability. With Saudi investment, relations between the two countries will be more stable, while Pakistan’s reputation will grow, the economy will prosper, and employment opportunities will increase. 

He noted that some hostile countries and negative elements are worried about Saudi investment in Pakistan. They may target Saudi investors like the Chinese working are targeted. 

Therefore, he demanded that the foolproof security of investors be ensured so they could work with peace of mind.

Hanif Mughal observed that there is a realisation at the top in Pakistan that we need to modify our internal dynamics to attract foreign investment.

The government is trying to make Pakistan an attractive destination for capital from other countries. Still, much must be done before making the country an investment destination. 

He said Pakistan is facing revenue, energy, and security issues that require attention. Ending corruption and bureaucratic red tape and establishing a regulatory and administrative environment that emphasises the simplicity of conducting business is also essential. 

In the meantime, the Saudi offers are likely to be realised shortly. Additional foreign investors from the Gulf region and beyond may investigate Pakistan’s investment potential. 

On the other hand, ensuring an environment of domestic political stability is essential to attracting huge foreign investments. 

It should not be overlooked that FDI allows the transfer of technology, and it can also promote competition in the domestic input market. Recipients of FDI often gain employee training for operating new businesses, which contributes to human capital development, and profits generated by FDI contribute to tax revenues.

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