ISLAMABAD: Finance Minister Senator Ishaq Dar has said that prudent policies and farsightedness of the incumbent government has put back the economy of country on the right track.
Chairing a meeting to review the entire budget process here on Saturday, Ishaq Dar expressed his satisfaction over the deliberations made so far and said that this is the first time that all the stake holders including Chambers, industry representatives and trade associations have been consulted prior to budget preparation and their genuine concerns have been taken care of in the budget document, well in advance.
Dr Waqar Masood, Finance Secretary and Mr. Tariq Bajwa, Chairman FBR briefed the Finance Minister on Finance Bill, proceedings in the Parliament and sought guidance on the budget process.
Finance Minister observed that in the budget we have included special schemes for the youth and to help poor segment of the society. He said that we have proposed measures to promote a culture of filing tax returns in the country to bring into net rich people who are not paying their due taxes. He added that we have also tried to remove the distortions and exemptions under the SROs regime and provided a level playing field to the industry. He mentioned about the special incentives have been given to the exporters, agriculture sector, textile and IT industry to harness the full potential of the Country. He added that our policies would ensure growth in agriculture and value added exports.
He said that as a citizen of Pakistan now it is our duty to pay our due taxes in order to provide fiscal space to the government to spend more on development projects and to help the poor segment of the society through the social safety net programs. He concluded that in line with the manifesto of the PML-N and vision of its leadership our policies aim at making Pakistan a country where its people can live in peace and prosperity.
Rana Assad Amin, Advisor to the Finance Ministry and senior officials of the Ministry of Finance and FBR also attended the meeting.
Meeting: Meanwhile, Chinese Ambassador to Pakistan Sun Weidong on Saturday called on Ishaq Dar and discussed the issues of mutual interest.
The finance minister informed the ambassador about the latest economic indicators and progress of economy during the last one year and highlighted the measures proposed in the next budget, which provides special incentives for foreign direct investment in Pakistan. He said that the new incentives would attract foreign investors to Pakistan, which has huge potential for growth and appreciated the Chinese contribution for the economic development of Pakistan.
As the country is experiencing a gap between power supply and demand, the Finance Minister underlined the importance of on going energy projects, which can help tackle the energy shortages. He said that the government has adopted fast track policy for the implementation of the projects started with the Chinese cooperation and added that these efforts are not only creating attractive opportunities of Chinese investment but new avenues of employment and trade are also opening for the people of Pakistan.
The Ambassador while congratulating the Finance Minister on the economic achievements, the country has made in the last one year, said, “We have been impressed by his budget speech and presentation.”
He underlined the importance of Pakistan-China Economic Cooperation and said that the aim of both the governments is to work for pushing ahead our long-standing friendship.
“China would help further boost the existing strong and strategic partnership between the two countries”, he added.
The Ambassador also discussed avenues for enhancing bilateral cooperation in various fields between the two countries. He appreciated Pakistan’s plans for the development projects initiated by the present government and said that “stronger Pakistan is our strength”.
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