No time frame on energy crisis: PM

* Nawaz says Pakistan will overcome power, gas crises in ‘few years’ * Govt will construct Diamer-Bhasha dam from its own resources if no foreign assistance is received

LONDON: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has said he cannot give a time frame for resolving the energy crisis in the country, but hoped that Pakistan will completely overcome power and gas crises within a couple of years.
Addressing the Pakistani community in London, the prime minister said his government was working day and night to overcome the energy crisis. “Soon we will get rid of this shortage. Just have trust in me,” he said.
Nawaz said another 21000mw of electricity will be added to the national grid within next eight to 10 years. He said Diamer-Bhasha and Dassu dams will contribute around 9,000mw of electricity to the system. The government will construct Diamer-Bhasha Dam from its own resources if it does not receive any foreign assistance, he pledged.
The prime minister said effective economic policies of the government have restored investors’ confidence. He said only democratic states can achieve progress and that everyone would have to contribute its due share for national progress.
Nawaz said the government’s expenditures have been slashed by 30 percent. Tax recovery has been increased by 16 percent while the remittances have witnessed a 12 percent surge, he said, and added that the country’s growth ratio will be doubled within next three years.
He said the government would soon initiate work on Lahore-Karachi motorway. He said the petroleum prices have been reduced thrice in the recent months.
He assured the Pakistani community that each public penny was trust with the government that would be spent on welfare of the masses.
The prime minister said tolerance is inevitable for national politics and that the PML-N has adopted the same policy during last five years. For the first time, a democratic transition completed successfully that should continue in future also, he said.
Referring to his meeting with British Prime Minister David Cameron, Nawaz said Britain has offered cooperation to Pakistan in various fields including energy and counterterrorism.
He appreciated the British prime minister for extending cooperation to Pakistan’s development.
The UK is willing to maintain friendly ties with Pakistan, he said, and added that Islamabad always supported good ties with all neighboring states.

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