News Analysis |
Prime Minister Imran Khan has addressed the Future Investment Initiative (FII) conference in Saudi Arabia on Tuesday and has stated the challenges PTI-led government been facing due to the poor decisions of previous government and mentioned the plans government has to tackle the issues. The premier said corruption, poverty, and unemployment are the biggest problems of Pakistan for which measures are being taken.
PM Khan said, “We have to get loans to pay off loans of previous government”. He emphasized the need of bolstering foreign exchange reserves, “We need to increase foreign reserves with remittances from the 8 to 9 million Pakistanis working abroad, need to give incentives to exporters and create opportunities for investment,” he added.
And now, Naya Housing Scheme that we have initiated, we are involving women into it as we have observed that women pay back their loans more efficiently than the men.
“Our institutions were destroyed by the previous government, now it has just been three months since our government came into power, we would need some time to fix the system and get the economy in the right direction.”
Talking about an easy process for investors, PM said, “We are restructuring our duty and tax system, this is the best time for investors to come to Pakistan. The plan is to create an enabling environment in Pakistan so that we could attract not just foreign investors, and not just overseas investors but our own investors.”
Highlighting the rich mineral reserves of Pakistan, that could not be extracted in past, PM said, “War on terror is the reason we could not have had any investment in our mineral resources. But things will change now. “
“Due to terrorism, investors would not come to Pakistan, but thanks to our security forces and intelligence agencies, Pakistan has brought terrorism under control. In December, Exxon is coming back to Pakistan,” he said. Speaking about empowering the women, PM said,” you can only empower women if you educate them.”
FII, an annual investment forum held in Saudi Arabia to discuss trends in the world economy and investment environment, was to be attended by major investors, chief executives, public officials, and economists.
“During our 5-years government in KP, we decided to build 100 colleges out of which 70 would be for women. And now, Naya Housing Scheme that we have initiated, we are involving women into it as we have observed that women pay back their loans more efficiently than the men. “Other than that, he talked about legislation too, “As per Sharia, women would be given due inheritance rights to empower them financially,” he added.
Answering to a question by a journalist about the potential of trade with the neighboring country of India, the PM said,”I, after holding the office, had extended peace hand to the India that probably due to the upcoming election that could only be won by anti-Pakistan rhetoric, the Modi government did not reciprocate in the same way.”
FII, an annual investment forum held in Saudi Arabia to discuss trends in the world economy and investment environment, was to be attended by major investors, chief executives, public officials, and economists. But the ‘Davos in the desert’ felt the blow when a number of contributors, after the alleged murder of Journalist Jamal Khashoggi, withdrew from the event.
The Los Angeles Times owner Patrick Soon Shiong, the president of World Bank Jim Yong Kim, Ford Executive Chairman Bill Ford, Google Cloud chief Executive Diane Greene and many more said that they would not be the part of summit and also media outlets including The New York Time, financial times, CNN and many more withdrew as a partners.
The Prime Minister Imran Khan– along with Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi, finance minister Asad Umar, Information minister Fawad Chauhdary and Advisor to Prime Minister on Commerce and Industry Abdul Razzak Dawood– had traveled to Saudi Arabia on Monday to attend the conference on the special invitation of King Salman Bin Abdel Aziz.
The outcomes of the visit of PM Khan would be seen later with investments it brings to Pakistan; however, analysts believe– that despite the criticism PM Khan faced about his decision to attend FII amidst Khashoggi saga– the need of hour was to keep priorities straight and to focus on the promise of betterment of economy, for which PM Khan’s visit to SA would bear fruit.
Many analysts were of praise for the PM
Listening to PM Imran Khan speaking at the Investors Conference in Saudi Arabia; feeling good that after 11 year Pakistan, a nation of 220 million, has a genuine leader that can speak at an international event without a paper chit in hand, Well Done PM!
— Moeed Pirzada (@MoeedNj) October 23, 2018
PM Imran Khan's three messages from Saudi Arabia:
1. Terrorism has been controlled
2. Pakistan is ready for international investment
3. This is the best time to investment in Pakistan
— farrukh saleem (@SaleemFarrukh) October 23, 2018
Listening to PM #ImranKhan speaking at the Investors Conference in Saudi Arabia; feeling good that after 11 year Pakistan, a nation of 220 million, has a genuine leader that can speak at an international event without a paper chit in hand, Well Done PM!#Riyadh #SaudiArabia
— Iram Butt (@IramButtLhr) October 23, 2018
— Ali Abbas (@Ali_Abbaspk) October 23, 2018