ISLAMABAD: Minister for Privatization, Fawad Hassan Fawad, has emphasized that the ongoing privatization process undertaken by the caretaker government is in strict accordance with the mandate given to it by the previous elected government. He made these remarks during a press conference held in Islamabad, where he was joined by Minister for Information and Broadcasting, Murtaza Solangi.
During the conference, Minister Fawad refuted any perception that the caretaker government has extended the privatization process under a new policy. He referred to an amendment made by the previous government in section 230 of the Elections Act, which expanded the caretaker government’s mandate to ensure policy continuity.
Fawad Hassan Fawad highlighted that the privatization process adheres to specific timelines that cannot be bypassed. Delaying these transactions would result in financial costs that would directly impact the national economy, leading to an increase in the fiscal deficit and inflation.
He clarified that the caretaker government has not added any new institutions or organizations to the list of entities set for privatization. Instead, all the entities in this list were originally enlisted after careful consideration by elected governments.
The Minister called on the media to avoid spreading unfounded news and encouraged the public to seek clarification from the government if they have any questions or concerns about any issue.
Fawad Hassan Fawad explained that the goal of privatization is to make these entities profitable and improve the quality of services they provide to the public. He cited an example of PIA, which was facing financial difficulties, and mentioned that necessary funds were swiftly allocated within forty hours to address its needs.
Regarding Pakistan Steel Mills, the Minister disclosed that its current capacity of one million tons would be increased to three million tons after privatization. He clarified that only the operational assets would be privatized, excluding those outside the operational area.
Minister for Information and Broadcasting also commented during the press conference, expressing satisfaction with the Election Commission’s announcement that general elections would take place by the end of January 2024. He viewed this as a positive step that would ensure the continuity of the democratic process and contribute to the country’s stability.