PML-N’s government overcame power outage, claims Ahsan

Stronger economy inevitable for country’s security: Ahsan Iqbal

LAHORE: Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal Saturday said the Pakistan Muslim League – Nawaz (PML-N) government had put the country on the road of progress and prosperity after overcoming the power outages.
Addressing an event titled ‘Think and Grow’, held under China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) at Pakistan Industrial Technical Assistance Centre (PITAC) here, he said people trusted the PML-N and voted it to power in order to bring development in the country.
The interior minister said CPEC was a real game-changer as now the investors from Europe, Middle East and other countries of the world were showing interest in investing in Pakistan, adding that political stability was needed to achieve the real objectives of CPEC project.
“If we did not bring political stability in the country, the Afghanistan will surpass us as President Hamid Karzai had completed his tenure and now President Ashraf Ghani was on the course,” he added.
He said it was important to learn lessons from successes of China, as it did not let anyone to compromise its political stability.
He said the youth was biggest asset of Pakistan, and the government had put in place special arrangements to provide them employment, adding that millions of jobs would be created owing to CPEC project, which would enable them to exhibit their skills in their respective fields.
CPEC would not only promote government-to-government and business-to-business cooperation, but also help strengthen people-to-people linkages, as it was a long-term project initiated for betterment of people, he maintained.
Ahsan Iqbal said Pakistan had rapidly emerged as top growing economies in the world in the recent years and the world was admitting it, adding that the international media, which had been portraying Pakistan as a safe haven for terrorism, was now calling it an rising economy due to Chinese investment.
He said the coal deposits in Thar were equal to the oil stocks of Saudi Arabia and Iran.
“We have wasted 70 years to tap coal but now because of CPEC, coal stocks are being exhausted to cater to the needs,” he said.
The Gwadar Port would help achieve the target through trade with Central Asia Republics and other regions, he added.
He said the country witnessed only three per cent growth rate from 2008 to 2013, adding that the growth rate significantly improved since the PML-N government came into power.
He said the people had to face load shedding of 18 to 20 hours in 2013, but now the situation had completely changed as the government had given topmost priority to energy sector and overcome energy crisis by putting in day and night efforts.
The minister said so-called “Suqraat and Buqraat”, every evening on television channels spread wrong information and misconceptions about CPEC and try to mislead people about the project, adding that the Corridor was not an ordinary project as it would pave the way to progress and prosperity of the country.
“We should be grateful to the people and government of China who stood with us during difficult times when even Pakistani investors were reluctant to invest in the country,” he said and added now the international community had started looking at Pakistan as a hub of billions of dollars of Chinese investment.
Later, Ahsan Iqbal distributed shields among the participants including University of Management and Technology (UMT) President Hassan Sohail Murad, DG Abid Sherwani, Dr Saleem Janjua, Dr Husnain Javed, chief organiser Muzammil Zia, engineer Sarfraz Ahmad, co-organiser Sania Rabbani from PITAC and others. – APP


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