ISLAMABAD, Dec 9 (APP): French Development Agency (AFD) Chief Executive Officer Remy Rioux has appreciated the progress made by Pakistan in stabilizing economy and taking it to a higher trajectory of growth.

He made the remarks during a meeting with Finance Minister Senator Mohammad Ishaq Dar in Paris.

The finance minister said Pakistan valued the financial assistance provided by the AFD to it in important sectors, including energy, water and sanitation.

He said the Pakistan Government appreciated the AFD’s support for
its initiatives for improving the transmission efficiency and water and sanitation in Pakistan.

The AFD announced that for the year 2016, it had approved a portfolio of Euro 265 million as soft loans for the rehabilitation of Mangla Hydropower Plant, augmenting NTDC transmission capacity and budget support for energy sector reforms, according to a message received here from Paris.

The AFD joined the ADB and JICA in the 5-year budget support programme initiated in 2014 for improving the management of tariff opening the market and strengthening accountability and transparency in the energy sector.

The AFD also evinced interest in working in the sectors of heritage and culture.

The agency has been operating in Pakistan since 2007 and is promoting
green and inclusive growth with special focus on renewable energy and energy efficiency projects.

Meanwhile, Open government Partnership (OGP) CEO Sanjay Pradhan called on the finance minister at the Embassy of Pakistan and congratulated Pakistan on joining the elite group of members of OGP.

He invited Pakistan to participate in the meetings of various OGP working groups and steering committees and offered help in developing Pakistan’s National Action Plan for OGP.

The finance minister said Pakistan’s decision to join OGP demonstrated the government’s commitment to transparent and accountable governance.

He reiterated the government’s pledge to work against corruption and
fiscal fraud and further high level commitments to fully achieving and sustaining the principles of OGP.

Bernard Cambier, Head of Middle East Division of Renault, the French
largest car manufacturing company also met the finance minister and reaffirmed Renault’s decision for setting up their car manufacturing facility in Pakistan by 2018.

Ishaq Dar appreciated Renault’s decision for choosing Pakistan for establishing their car facility and assured full support for its operations in Pakistan.

He also interacted with French and Pakistani media and briefed them on the outcome of his visit.

The meetings were also attended by Tariq Bajwa, Secretary Economic Affairs Division, Pakistan, Ambassador of Pakistan to France Moin ul Haque and the Embassy team.