Islamabad – Staff Reporter:
Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting Farrukh Habib Thursday advised Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari to abstain from giving analysis on the economic affairs.
“When a person does not know anything about economy, he should avoid issuing wrong statements on such important matters,” said the minister in a statement.
Chiding the PPP chairman, he said Bilawal had naïve understanding of the economic related matters and described his analysis as ‘Naach Na Janny Angan Tehrra’ [a bad workman always blames his tools].
He said implementation on prices of essential items was the responsibility of the provincial governments after 18th constitutional amendment which was enacted during the PPP’s regime.
The minister said the PPP chairman should explain as to how many hoarders and profiteers were taken to the task to overcome the artificial price-hike.
“Why have new industrial zones not been set up in Sindh to promote industrialization there,” he questioned.
Commenting on the Sindh government’s incompetency, he said over 500 officers were still making money in Sindh after striking a plea bargain with the National Accountability Bureau.
He said around 35 per cent of the provincial budget amounting to around Rs 420 billion was allocated for health and education sectors, but the entire amount succumbed to corruption.
Contrary to this, he said it was Prime Minister Imran Khan who with a strong commitment steer the country out of economic crisis and put it on a sustainable path despite many challenges on external and internal fronts including locusts attack, border tension with India, opposition blackmailing on national issues such as Financial Action Task Force (FATF) legislation and threats of en mass resignation.
He said Pakistan’s projected economic growth was at 4 per cent as compared to the other regional economies which registered a negative growth.
On closure of the last fiscal year, the minister added, India’s economic growth stood at – 8 per cent due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the United Kingdom’s at – 9.9. At the same time, Bangladesh stood at 1.6 per cent while Turkey at 1.8 percent.
He said the current account remained US $1 billion surplus during the ongoing financial year, exports surged by 13.5 per cent, remittances crossed US $24 billion, large-scale manufacturing grew by nine percent, and one billion dollars were deposited in the Roshan Digital Bank Account.
Farrukh said an amount of Rs 1,100 billion was being given to farmers, out of which, an amount of Rs 500 billion was dedicated to the wheat growers. The country produced 27.3 million tonnes of wheat due to prudent agro-policies of the incumbent government, he added.
He said the government would have to pay [Rs] 1,500 billion as capacity charges to the Independent Power Producers owing to expensive agreements inked by the previous regimes.