Sharif Seeks World Bank's Help in Implementing Reform Agenda

Sajjad Hussain/Islamabad
Sharif Seeks World Bank's Help in Implementing Reform Agenda

Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif today said his government believed in liberal and private sector-driven economy as he sought World Bank's support in implementing reform agenda and improving the business climate.

While talking to World Bank President Jim Yong Kim, who called on him at the Prime Minister's House, Sharif said: "Our efforts are aimed at ensuring ideal business environment for the private sector as governments are not meant to do business.

"When private sector is adequately facilitated, the business benefits reach the entire country; when the governments start doing businesses, then huge losses in the shape of subsidies are incurred," he was quoted as saying in an official statement.

Kim, who arrived in Pakistan yesterday for a two-day visit, said the country's important strategic location between the world's two largest consumer markets (India and China) offers unique opportunities to Pakistan for further economic development.

He expressed full support for the government's tough economic decisions and said that the World Bank supports the structural reform agenda.

Sharif appreciated the support of World Bank in Pakistan's economic growth and resuming policy lending after the present government assumed office.

"The policy-based loans would go a long way in helping the government implement its reform agenda and further improve the business environment in Pakistan," he said.

Sharif said that the government is making all-out efforts to bring improvements in every sector of the economy including development of mega-hydropower projects, rail and road infrastructure, education and health.

The assistance of World Bank for Dasu Hydropower Project and Tarbela-IV Extension Project will help the government in improving the energy mix and reduce dependence on expensive fuels, he said.

Kim lauded the "prudent economic policies of the present government, saying Pakistan's economic outlook has become stable which is the result of the ardent efforts of the country's financial team".

"I can recall our first meeting when I had shared my worries about Pakistan's security, energy and macroeconomic stability. Let me state that under your leadership, Pakistan has witnessed phenomenal improvements in all three sectors and we support your endeavours," he said.

Pakistan is now on the path of increased economic growth and prosperity, he added.

Kim admired the government's projects aimed at achieving better regional connectivity and cooperation.


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