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Pakistan

Development budget being reviewed in light of flood relief efforts: Ahsan Iqbal

  • Says Pakistan now has opportunity to rebuild flooded villages in a sustainable manner
Published August 30, 2022

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Federal Minister for Planning and Development Ahsan Iqbal said on Tuesday that the government of Pakistan is reviewing the development budget for 2022-23 in a bid to provide relief to flood stricken people and regions.

“We are trying to save funds to divert them towards the flood affectees for help,” he said in a press conference.

Lamenting the large-scale destruction caused by the floods, he said that Pakistan now had the opportunity to rebuild the flooded villages in a sustainable manner.

Initial economic losses from Pakistan floods at least $10bn

“We can modernise the flood-hit rural areas and alleviate poverty in these regions,” Iqbal said.

This comes following an interview to Reuters on Monday, in which Iqbal estimated that initial economic losses from floods in Pakistan could reach at least $10 billion.

In the press conference on Tuesday he appealed to the nation to assist in rescue and relief efforts, and urged the people of Pakistan to reduce their expenses and donate to charities.

“The people in flooded areas need our help,” he stressed. “Pakistanis have to join hands to enable the nation to effectively deal with the malady.”

According to him, it was the responsibility of all those who are safe from floods to aid those who have been displaced by the disaster.

Flood emergency: UN appeals for $160m to assist Pakistan

Besides donations, he urged the public to take part in relief and rescue operations.

He also requested overseas Pakistanis to support the country.

“If they want to come on field and work, we will facilitate them in every possible manner,” he said. “If they want to help through an NGO, we will facilitate that as well.”

In a message to the business community and high-income individuals, he said its time to support the country and aid in its development

Unprecedented and historical flash floods caused by abnormal monsoon rains have washed away roads, crops, infrastructure and bridges, killing at least 1,000 people in recent weeks and affecting more than 33 million.

‘Third’ of Pakistan under water as flood aid efforts gather pace

Earlier, the minister had said it might take five years to rebuild and rehabilitate the South Asian nation of 200 million people, which will be facing an acute challenge of food shortage.

During the press conference on Tuesday, he pointed out that the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) led-government had established the Pakistan Flood Protection Programme in 2013 and drafted a 10-year flood protection plan.

“Not a single penny was spent on it during the PTI-led government’s tenure,” he said.

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Enaam E. Hanid Aug 31, 2022 01:38am
Will you please update what is the last date to file annual income tax for 2021-2022. Thanks
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