Political stability, continuity of policies vital for country’s progress: Ahsan Iqbal

LAHORE   -   Federal Minister for Planning Development and Special Initiatives Ahsan Iqbal has said that political stability and continuity of policies are vital for ensuring country’s progress. He said this while addressing the Econ Fest on ‘How to turnaround Pakistan’ at Alhamra on Saturday.

He said that in current cir­cumstances of the country there was no single leader, party or institution which could alone steer the country out of existing challenges add­ing that if we wanted to move forward there was a need to learn the science of collabora­tion. Country needed unified solutions for its problems, he added. He said that when he was studying in engineering university, he got a chance and was elected as president of students union and through this experience he had learnt that public leadership could play significant role in bring­ing social change. He said, “public service requires a pas­sion and conviction and is a great virtue.” He said that Pak­istan could turn all dreams of youngsters into reality, but it took someone with dedica­tion, determination and hard work. Ahsan Iqbal said that political stability and social harmony were essential ele­ments for ensuring progress and prosperity. If there was a conflict in society then no policy could yield positive re­sults, he maintained. He said, “If we look back at country’s history our policies always remained progressive.” He said that Japan, South Ko­rea, Malaysia, Thailand, Sin­gapore, China, Bangladesh, Vietnam and Turkey were countries which had made speedy progress during last 50 years. Minister said, “a pol­icy needs minimum ten years to get successful”. He said that unfortunately Pakistan had dropped three catches, first in 1960’s, second in 1991 and third in 2017 adding that dur­ing these times country could made enormous progress but it did not happened. He said that China Pakistan Economic Corridor was the big project which had changed country’s profile altogether but unfor­tunately in 2018 government changed policies. Chinese investment was scandalized, he added. He said from 1947 to 2013 only 18,000 mega­watts energy was produced in the country and in four years, PML-N produced and added 11,000 megawatts energy in the system, but unfortunately this effort was scandalized. Ahsan Iqbal said once, he asked Dr Abdul Qadir Khan and Dr Ashfaq Ahmad about the success behind achiev­ing their goal. He said both apprised him that approach of shared vision, stability of tenure, following merit in recruitment, posting, trans­fer, investing on our people, and we were provided with resources all these things helped us to achieve our de­sired goal.” Minister said that now it was a high time that ownership of development agenda should be given to people as this would help in continuity of policies.

He said it was of utmost importance for the country to develop its export poten­tial and there was a need to increase our tax to GDP ratio.

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