ISLAMABAD - The Government of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan and the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany on Friday finalised bi-annual government-government negotiations for calendar year 2013 and 2014. Euro 102.5 million (Rs 14.3 billion) were allocated with this agreement to new and existing projects in the focal sectors of German-Pakistani Development Cooperation: Education, Energy, Governance and Health.
After the Federal Cabinet’s approval, the signing of the agreement was carried out by Ms Nargis Sethi, Secretary Economic Affairs Division and Dr Uta Boellhoff, Director General Europe, Middle East and Asia; Multilateral Development Policy of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development today.
The geographical focal areas of cooperation remain in the provinces of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KPK) and the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA). In addition, selected national programmes and projects focusing on the metropolitan areas of and around Lahore and Karachi are in implementation.
German Development Assistance to Pakistan has contributed more than Euro 2.5 billion since 1961.
On this occasion, the Secretary EAD said that this Financial and Technical assistance, some of which have already started flowing, will enhance the efforts of Federal and provincial Governments in Pakistan in the fields of Governance, basic education, basic health and renewable energy.
Dr Böllhoff said that “This German commitment is an expression of the German support to bring forward crucial reforms by the new Government, especially in the energy sector and towards reforms of the tax system.” The German funding is also in support of the reforms agreed upon as part of the Extended Fund Facility approved on September 4th by the Executive Board of the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
It is important to mention here negotiations took place at a time when the newly elected governments on federal and provincial level carry forward various reform efforts in different sectors.
This new commitment by the German government will be used to strengthen the existing support for Vocational Education and Training (TVET, co-funded by the Dutch Government and the European Union) to support the implementation of the national TVET Reform. In health, additional funding is provided on federal and provincial level to enhance Human Resource Development and the implementation of social security systems. In addition projects to improve energy supply for the national grid, decentralised rural energy solutions as well as energy efficiency projects with the industries providing job opportunities, have received additional funding. The financial support to Afghan refugees and refugee hosting areas implemented through UNHCR will also be upgraded.
Dr Uta Boellhoff and delegation from the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development during their stay in Pakistan, used opportunity to engage in stakeholder discussions with the government on federal and provincial level and with civil society representative.