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LAHORE: Federal Minister for Planning, Development and Reforms Professor Ahsan Iqbal said on Saturday several international investors are eager to invest in the country now due to economic policies of the government.

Addressing National Excellency Awards distribution ceremony organised by Institution of Engineers Pakistan on the Engineers Day here on Saturday, he said policies were not responsible for failure but political instability had damaged economy in the past.

He said conspiracies against the country had been failed.

The minister said Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif had approved internship for 20,000 engineers and it was being planned for the next financial year that 100,000 youths would be trained in the information technology.

"The China-Pakistan Economic Corridor is a practical picture of Pak-China friendship," he said. Ahsan added that participation of 65 countries in One Belt One Road (OBOR) Conference was an example of success and 100 more countries had requested to join the project.

He said China wanted to make Pakistan an industrial economy, adding that critics would remain crying while Pakistan would make progress.

He said Pakistani economy was growing speedily and the GDP growth had been reached at 5.3 per cent this year and it was the highest in last 10 years while it was 3.7 per cent in 2013.

The minister said the biggest investment of history was being made in the energy sector in Pakistan.

"Only 16,000 megawatt electricity had been produced in 66 years of the country's history while 10,000 megawatt electricity would be inducted in the national grid between 2014 and 2018 (four years)," he added. Ahsan said a new record was being made in energy distribution and transmission lines.

He said resources had been expanded in the country and progress could be witnessed in every sector.

He said the Lahore-Karachi Motorway project would be completed in 2018, a revolution in Balochistan had been done due to construction of roads and highways, adding that the distance covered in 24 hours in the past now it could be covered in just eight hours. "Roads are the first step to progress and prosperity as they are helpful in elimination poverty and ignorance," he said.

The minister said revolutionary power projects were in the last phase of completion, adding that Thar Coal project could produce energy for 400 years.

"2000 megawatt electricity will be produced till 2020- 2021 from nuclear power plant which will be able to produce energy round the year," he added.

He said land had been purchased of one billion US dollar for Diamir Bhasha Dam. "It is planned that 30,000 to 40,000 megawatt electricity will be produced from projects at the Indus River with the help of China", the minister said.

 

He said political stability was important and Pakistan would be among the 25 big economies in 2025 if political stability sustained in the country.

"International financial institutions are now saying that Pakistan will be included in top 10 economies if speed of progress remains the same," he said.

He stressed the engineers to work hard for the nation and government would also do its best for welfare of engineers.

Chairman Pakistan Engineering Council Engineer Javaid Saleem Qureshi and others also addressed the conference. Awards and shields were also given to the prominent performers.

 

Copyright APP (Associated Press of Pakistan), 2017

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