APP110-21 ISLAMABAD: December 21 - Finance Minister Senator Mohammad Ishaq Dar chairing the meeting with the delegation of LCCI. APP

ISLAMABAD, Dec 21 (APP): Minister for Finance Senator Muhammad Ishaq Dar Wednesday held a meeting with a delegation of the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) led by Abdul Basit, President LCCI here and discussed matters pertaining to national economy and the business community.
Welcoming the delegation, Finance Minister recalled that when the present government assumed office in 2013, Pakistan’s economy was in a precarious situation and international experts were predicting that it would take Pakistan’s economy five years to stabilize.
The Minister highlighted that, contrary to those predictions, Pakistan had managed to achieve macroeconomic stability within two and a half years due to the efforts of the present government.
He said that the government was now focused on achieving higher, sustainable and inclusive economic growth.
Abdul Basit, President of the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry congratulated the Minister over his remarkable achievements in achieving macro-economic stability, structural reforms, merger of three stock exchanges, Companies Bill 2016 and uninterrupted electricity supply to the Industry.
He said the business community highly appreciated these developments and making sincere efforts to boost industrial growth and exports.
He stressed upon the need of focusing on food industry which had huge potential to enhance exports and provide relief to the agriculture sector.
He also extended an invitation to the Finance Minister to visit Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry in the near future.
The Finance Minister accepted the LCCI’s invitation and briefed the delegation on the turnaround of Pakistan’s economy in the last three years, macroeconomic stability, and improvement of energy and security situation in the country, which had provided a conducive atmosphere for foreign direct investment.
The Government had built confidence of the business community and country’s outlook is positive, he maintained.
The Finance Minister said that the government was implementing all those things which were promised in the PML (N) election manifesto.
Dar informed the delegation that the OECD (Multilateral Convention on Mutual Administrative assistance in Tax Matters), which he signed on September 14, 2016 in Paris had been ratified by the Pakistani Cabinet.
Pakistani Cabinet also authorized the processing of Pakistan’s membership to Open Government Partnership (OGP), he added.
Accordingly, he handed over Pakistan’s Letter of Intent for joining OGP to the French President Francois Hollande in the OGP Global Summit held in Paris.
All these measures showed Prime Minister, Muhammed Nawaz Sharif governments’ commitment to usher in transparency and good governance in Pakistan, he maintained.
He viewed that these steps had enhanced Pakistan image as a sovereign and prestigious country in the international arena.
The Minister said that world’s economists applauded Pakistan’s economic performance and British economist Jim O’Neill said in his report that Pakistan had had potential to become the 18th largest economy by 2050 but he was determined to achieve this target much earlier.
He assured the delegation that government would make every possible effort to promote investment and exports.
The delegation also discussed problems being faced in further growth of industry in the country.