By Shafek E. Koreshe
Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif Tuesday said he had come to the World Economic Forum to share the remarkable economic turnaround of Pakistan, that only a few years back was on the verge of an economic collapse and the entire global financial community was acknowledging this positive change.
The Prime Minister who is in Switzerland for the Annual Meeting of the World Economic Forum, said the country’s economic development was moving ahead at a rapid pace and was being acknowledged by the international media and global financial institutions. The Prime Minister has a hectic schedule ahead with several meetings lined up with heads of the top ranking companies and financial institutions in the next few days where he will apprise them about the great investment opportunities and bright prospects for large international brands. There has been a renewed interest by foreign investors in Pakistan following the positive ratings by global financial organisations.
Nawaz Sharif said the international agencies were giving very encouraging signals about Pakistan’s economy and lots of foreign investment was pouring into the country. He said the country’s inflation was at the lowest ebb while the GDP was on the rise. He said Revenue Collection had improved a lot while rapid progress was being made on the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). He said the CPEC was a “game changer” not only for Pakistan but also for the entire region. He said work on the CPEC was underway in all regions of the country and the people of Pakistan were the real beneficiaries. He said no matter whether a person was in Balochistan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Sindh, Punjab, AJK or Gilgit Baltistan, he would benefit equally and the country would witness a development boom across its length and breadth.
The Prime Minister to a question about the growth in Pakistan and its trickledown effect for the common man, said there has been great social and economic improvement in the lives of the people and pointed to the disparity that once plagued the Balochistan province.
However, he said that the situation was rapidly improving in the province and today one can travel from the Gwadar Port in morning to reach Quetta by midday-something that was unimaginable a few years back. He said such progress was made possible only in the past two years and a number of new roads have been completed and now there was greater inter-connectivity between all the provinces and even the remotest areas were now accessible.
The Prime Minister said there was no concept of overnight development, and road networks were the key to progress, prosperity and development. He said there would be more farms to market roads, new schools, health centers, economic zones, new industry that would generate employment and above all bring the people ofthe country closer. The Prime Minister regretted that the governments in the past ignored their vital duty of serving the masses selflessly while his government was proud to have gone to all lengths to serve the people of Pakistan. He said today there were new employment opportunities and the benefits of the growth were reaching far and wide.