KARACHI: The Sindh government has asked the federal government to open Sindh-Rajhastan border just like opening of Pakistan and Indian Punjab border, in order to provide opportunity to the province to improve its trade.
The suggestion was made by participants of provincial consultative workshop on Pakistan Vision 2025 and 11th Five Year Plan (2013-18) before Federal Minister for Planning and Development Prof Ahsan Iqbal, held on Saturday at Sindh Secretariat.
The workshop proceedings were presided over by Sindh Chief Minister Qaim Ali Shah. The participants said that opening of the Sindh border would provide more opportunities to the people of the province. They said that the traders would benefit due to huge industry in India.
Speaking to media after meeting, Prof Iqbal said that he held consultations with provincial government over preparation of Pakistan Vision 2025 and 11th Five Year Plan, a project initiated by federal government.
Iqbal said that the recent talks showed maturity of the Pakistani politics, where parties having different perspectives are on one page over cooperation for progress of the country.
He said that the initiative was taken to provide better chances of education, employment, housing facilities to people. “Input given by Sindh was great and the performance of every sector will be scrutinised every month so that each of them should perform their duties in a better way,” the minister said.
The minister said that no dam would be constructed without consent of provincial government. “Federal government has a policy to avoid building projects that could damage the unity of the country. We have started progress over construction of Diamer Bhasha Dam.”
He said that 70 percent of the electricity is produced through oil but now the federal government was mulling over to produce electricity through other natural sources including coal, water, nuclear and wind. “We are giving priority to Thar Coal project and Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and Finance Minister Ishaq Dar had asked Chinese investors to come and invest in this project during their recent visits to China.”
He said that the government would induct competent staff in regulatory authorities like OGRA, NEPRA and others to enhance their efficiencies. “We inherited problems in these institutions but soon they will be eliminated after induction of new staff.”
He said that there was no difference of policy by current and former governments over privatization. “Those institutions that were not able to run by government should be privatised to increase their efficiency. We are searching investors for fleet induction in PIA so that the institution could gain profit instead of causing a loss of Rs 3.0 billion in a month.”
Speaking on the occasion, Shah said that province has resources but was not able to find any investor. “We are happy that federal government is working to attract investors for projects in Sindh.” Shah said that all problems related to issues regarding health, education and social sector were discussed in the meeting. “Modern procedures to increase crop in the province were also discussed so that Sindh could produce surplus crop.”
He said that there was a delay on execution of Thar coal project by federal government but he discussed this issue with the prime minister and he was hopeful that the project would be initiated on time.
The chief minister said that the next meeting would be held on January 25 to overview the progress made in this regard.
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