Minister for Planning and Development Ahsan Iqbal on Friday said that despite the worst economic crisis in the country, the government would not reduce budget of the Higher Education Commission (HEC) in the upcoming fiscal year.

Chairing a meeting here to review the HEC matters, the minister said the government was allocating more funds than what the HEC demanded.

He said future of the country was linked to the development of education sector and a strong coordination would be developed among the universities and the industrial institutions.

He said the HEC should start audit of annual performance of the universities to run them according the the international standards. He also directed to equip the engineering universities with state of the art tools.