Country needs long-term planning, policies: Ahsan

ISLAMABAD - Federal Minister for Planning, Development, and Reforms Ahsan Iqbal on Monday said that Pakistan has faced lots of problems like worst energy crisis and others in last fourteen years due to lack of long-term planning and policies.
“Non-planning in past fourteen years has landed us in worst energy crisis and a bigger water crisis will hit us next year if we continued on this path. Between 1999 and 2013, there was no long term plan in Pakistan, we can’t afford another era on non-planning. Non-implementation is bad, but no planning is worst,” said Ahsan Iqbal while inaugurating the first consultative meeting for Pakistan 2025 Programme.
Federal minister said Pakistan is an under-managed country not an underdeveloped country. The government has decided to develop Pakistan 2025 Programme with a view to transforming Pakistan into a developed and prosperous country, which will be finalized by 31 Dec, 2013 and formally launched by the Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.
He said, “The forces of knowledge and information revolution, globalization, and citizen empowerment require speedy response and transformation of society and economy to meet the challenges of Knowledge revolution era. Unfortunately, all elements of Pakistan 2010 programme are as relevant today as they were in 1998 because no progress was made on the agenda set under it. Today, the challenges have become more complex as the challenge of security has become an important development pre requisite. The governance structures have collapsed and economy is in shambles. But, Pakistan is blessed with very rich human and material resources. We can turn around Pakistan’s economy within a few years and make it one of the fastest growing economies of Asia. Corruption and mis-governance of past regime has ruined our economy but we will not make that an excuse for not doing anything. The nation has reposed confidence in us to rectify the situation and put Pakistan on path of prosperity. If Pakistanis can shine in other countries why can’t we make our country shine in the world.”
He further said, “Pakistan 2025 programme will be action driven and have strong mechanism for monitoring and evaluation so that it doesn’t remain in papers only. The programme will be developed with broad based consultations with all stakeholders including political parties so that it reflects nation’s aspirations. Before election we were divided on political affiliations now elections are over and it is time for PML-N, PPP, PTI, JI, ANP, MQM, JUI-F and all other party supporters to work as a one Pakistani nation to work collectively for overcoming the challenges we face.
The programme will seek to make Pakistan a knowledge economy which is globally competitive through energy security, self reliance, transforming our productive sectors into value added sectors, promoting private sector as major driver of investment and development, developing modern infrastructure to make Pakistan regional hub, initiating governance and institutional reforms for a responsive, efficient, and effective government, and building a world class social capital based on a quality human resource.”
The meeting was attended by heads of leading public and private sector organizations, experts, civil society members, and media representatives.

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