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Pakistan a ‘lucky nation’ in comparison with others hit by COVID-19: PM Imran Khan in WEF tackle

Prime Minister Imran Khan addressing the Country Strategy Dialogue (CSD) on Pakistan which is being organized by the World Economic Forum (WEF), on November 25, 2020. — Geo News screengrabISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan  stated Wednesday that Pakistan is a “fortunate” nation as  in comparison with others who had been additionally affected by the coronavirus, as its companies had witnessed fast restoration after the lockdown was lifted. The prime minister was addressing the World Economic Forum’s (WEF) Country Strategy Dialogue (CSD) on Pakistan.The CSD on Pakistan was held in recognition of the nation’s constructive financial trajectory and its commendable resilience amid the myriad challenges confronted in the course of the coronavirus outbreak.The prime minister stated that the nation opened the development sector, and since the work executed there was within the open air, the virus didn’t unfold.The premier, speaking concerning the Ehsaaas Programme, stated that 15 million households got money handouts — and it actually saved Pakistan from the worst results of lockdowns.”Because the people [cooperated] with us, they complied with our measures we came out of it better than any other country,” the premier stated, including: “We saved our economy and we save people from dying from the virus.”However, the premier stated that he was “worried” because the second peak had hit Pakistan, and the folks weren’t taking it critically. “We don’t know how long will this wave last.””In our country with high levels of poverty, we cannot afford to [impose] a lockdown where we [close] our businesses and factories,” he stated, including that the nation had taken a coverage choice to solely prohibit public gatherings — which he termed “non-essential stuff”.Economic challengesSpeaking concerning the two “biggest” challenges that his authorities confronted after they got here into energy, he stated: “The fiscal deficit — the biggest in our country’s history — and the current account deficit that was also a challenge.”The prime minister stated that when his authorities got here into energy, for a 12 months and a half, they introduced down the deficits and launched insurance policies to spice up the economic system.Speaking about cash laundering, he stated that his authorities had clamped down on launderers, and consequently, after 17 years, Pakistan had a present account surplus within the final quarter.”This affected our currency, and it is now gaining. Our exports are improving […] as we give incentives to the industry in general,” he stated.”Among the countries hit by COVID, Pakistan is fortunate,” the prime minister stated, including: “After attaining stability, we are now moving in the right direction.” Speaking concerning the sensible lockdown, he stated that together with the lockdown, Pakistan additionally protected the each day wage earners.The prime minister additionally knowledgeable the discussion board concerning the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor and stated that the nation wanted expert labour for the undertaking.Talking concerning the car business, he stated that Pakistan would welcome funding within the sector. “Pakistan wants investors to have facilities and benefits here.””Small businesses’ development is Pakistan’s top priority,” PM Imran Khan added.Foreign tiesShedding mild on Indo-Pak ties, PM Imran Khan stated that Pakistan had persisting issues with India. “Hopefully, with proper leadership in India, relations will return to normal.”Reiterating that Pakistan was a serious participant within the US-Taliban talks, the premier famous that the 2 events had agreed to debate points on a desk by way of the help of Islamabad.The prime minister stated that he aspired to see peace prevail in Afghanistan because of the US-Taliban peace talks that befell after years of bloodshed.”Peace in Afghanistan will benefit surrounding areas,” he stated.”President Trump has done well in Afghanistan, PM Imran Khan said, adding: Hopefully, [President-elect Joe] Biden will not back down from [the] good steps in Afghanistan.”Other WEF engagementsThe prime minister may also take part in an interactive dialogue with WEF President Børge Brende, and chairpersons and chief govt officers (CEOs) of main international firms and WEF associate firms, learn a press release from the Foreign Office.Subsequent periods of the day-long CSD will characteristic discussions of world enterprise leaders with Adviser on Finance Dr Abdul Hafeez Sheikh, Minister for Economic Affairs Makhdoom Khusro Bakhtiar, and Minister for Industries and Production Hammad Azhar, on wide-ranging topics, together with economic system, finance, funding, commerce, manufacturing, digitalization and startups, regional connectivity and China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) and so forth.The final section will embrace a roundtable on “Energy Transition Priorities and Challenges in Pakistan”, co-led by Energy Minister Omar Ayub, Climate Change Advisor Malik Amin Aslam, and Special Assistant to the PM on Petroleum Nadeem Babar.Moderated individually by the WEF president, managing director and different senior officers, every session of the CSD will allow CEOs of world firms and multinational firms to work together immediately with Pakistan’s prime management on the huge enterprise and funding alternatives obtainable within the nation as a result of numerous initiatives for financial reforms by the incumbent authorities.The CSD is the WEF’s signature platform for nations with rising economies and promising development potential.The CSD was the second such occasion organized by the WEF for Pakistan this 12 months. The CSD throughout PM Imran Khan’s go to to Davos, Switzerland, for the WEF Annual Meeting in January 2020 was broadly attended by the worldwide company sector.

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