ISLAMABAD: World Bank President Jim Yong Kim on Tuesday said Pakistan was poised to become the next fast growing successful economy due to important steps taken by the government over the past few years.
Addressing a meeting on the country’s economic performance in Islamabad on Tuesday, he pointed out the country had made significant strides to achieve micro economic stability and enhance its domestic revenues by introducing reforms in the tax system. He said the country had also undertaken a number of important steps to improve business climate.
Yong Kim said Pakistan had an important geo strategic location and peace and stability in the country was imperative to the entire world. He said the World Bank, being a partner, would support the government’s initiatives to bolster economic growth and provide assistance in the areas of need. He said we are not visiting Pakistan to give prescriptions but will lend support to further consolidate gains made in the economic sector.
The World Bank president emphasized the need for bringing dynamism in the private sector saying this will generate immense employment opportunities and lift the people out of poverty. He also underlined the need for more investments in the education and health sectors.
Earlier, Finance Minister Ishaq Dar apprised the World Bank president about the country’s economic performance. He said the present government assumed power in difficult situation but due to prudent policies averted the default. He said the revenue collection has witnessed significant growth over the last three years and budget deficit has been reduced. He said we are on track to reduce it to four point three percent during the current fiscal year.
The minister said that the country is expected to achieve five plus GDP growth due to significant performance of different sectors particularly manufacturing. He said the inflation has been brought down to 2.1 percent, which is the lowest in the last twelve years.
Ishaq Dar said that allocations for social safety nets have been tripled to protect the vulnerable groups. He said currently five million deserving families are being provided stipend under the Income Support Program and our target is to enhance it to five point four million families by the close of this year.
Ishaq Dar said that as part of efforts to give an impetus to economic growth, development spendings have been doubled.
He said the government is also on track to address the energy crisis and by the end of March 2018, ten thousand megawatt of electricity will be added to the national grid.
He said privatization policy is being pursued to improve the performance and service delivery of public sector enterprises.
He said the country is treading the right path to consolidate the gains achieved over the past few years. He said the policies are aimed at ensuring inclusive and sustainable growth in the years to come.