National development conference on Oct 26: Ahsan Iqbal

ISLAMABAD: Federal Minister for Planning and Development Ahsan Iqbal said on Monday that the National Conference on Vision 2025 would be held here on October 26 to prepare a consensus roadmap for the country’s economic growth.

About 1000 stakeholders, including representatives from political parties, businessmen, agriculturists, labourers, industrialists and civil society have been invited to attend the conference, said the minister while addressing a press conference here.

“Our aim is to prepare a roadmap with national consensus for development in all sectors of economy,” he said.

He said besides stakeholders, all the political parties had also been invited to participate in the event.

He said similar conferences would be held in all the provinces. Ten to twelve drivers of economy would be identified during these consultations and focus would be made to find ways for sustainable growth.

He said the government was not only taking all stakeholders on board on the economic issues, but it had also national consensus for dealing with the security situation of the country and particularly in Karachi.

He said that lack of proper planning and more importantly non- implementation of policies in the past were the main reasons that the country could not prosper. His government was serious in implementing the policies for development.

Ahsan Iqbal said that discontinuity of policies had proved more dangerous than corruption for the country. That was why the present government was trying to develop a sustainable programme for proper development.

“No country can prosper unless it has continuity in its policies”, he said.”If we are successful in adopting a roadmap, it will give a clear message to the world that Pakistan’s economic policy has been put on right track, which will result in increased investments.”

He said that the country could not afford further delay in developing policies. If a policy was not devised, a severe water crisis would have to be faced within next 10 years, he added.

The government, he saidm had devised two plans–the long term 2025 Vision and five-year plan– to lead the country towards development.

He said the government would have achieve all the goals under the five-year plan. As far as Vision 2025 was concerned, the government was committed to set the direction and keeping that in view, the conference was being arranged.

Ahsan Iqbal said all the stakeholders would hold discussions and consultations in the conference and their feedback would be used to make the policy more comprehensive.

He said that a Delivery Unit has also been established in the Planning Commission to monitor the performance of Vision 2025, and fiver-year plan, besides supervising the performance of different miniseries.

He urged the provinces to actively take part in the conference as without their participation the dream of development could not be materialized.

The minister said that the Planning Commission had already launched Youth Development Fellowship programme and interviews for recruiting young talent was at its final stage.

He also urged the professionals of different fields, whether in the country or outside the country, to come and donate two years of their professional services for their country and help it come on the development path.

He said that making the country among top ten economies of the world would be realized, adding that Pakistan, being the nation of 190 million people has promising future as investors could not ignore this huge market.

He was of the view that if we have to rid the contry of external debt burdens, “we will have to enhance tax ratio from current 9% to upto 13-14 percent of GDP”.