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ISLAMABAD, Dec 13 (APP):Minister for Interior, Ahsan Iqbal Wednesday said corruption was not just a moral hazard but it could be a major hindrance in way of establishing just, peaceful and prosperous society.
Pakistan has been ranked 116 out of I76 nations on Transparency International’s (T1) Corruption Perception Index for 2016 which signals significant improvement over previous years and also highlights need for further improvements, he said this while addressing a seminar on United Against Corruption for Just, Peaceful and Prosperous Pakistan.
The seminar was organised by Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) in collaboration with United Nations Development Programme here at its Headquarters.
The seminar was also attended by Director General FIA, Bashir Ahmed Memon, Country Director UNDP, Ignacio Artaza, UNDP Resident Representative, Neil Buhne and people from different walks of life.
Ahsan Iqbal said Pakistan had formally joined Open Government Partnership (OGP) last year – a 70-country alliance which sought commitments from national governments to promote transparency, accountability and responsiveness to citizens.
Pakistan had also formulated a draft National Action Plan to implement OGP commitments in consultation with key stakeholders from government and civil society, he said and added Pakistan was also in process of joining OECD Convention on Combating Bribery and another OECD Multi-lateral Convention on Mutual Administrative Assistance in tax matters.
He said this demonstrated Pakistan’s commitment to adopt international best practices encompassing transparency, accountability and good governance.
Ahsan Iqbal shared the remarkable progress made by Pakistan in macro-economic sector through prudent fiscal policies which had resulted in economic growth rate of over 5.3 per cent per annum.
Major economic projects were underway including under China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), he said and added transparency had been ensured in their execution.
He said Pakistan was moving forward on the path of development and prosperity and every year of the current government’s performance was better than the previous one.
In his remarks, Country Director UNDP, Ignacio Artaza said corruption and lack of accountability undermine
countries efforts to achieve Sustainable Development Goals, particularly SDG-16, to build peace, justice and strong institutions.
He said UNDP had entered into new partnerships with Pakistan to develop innovative solutions to end corruption and increase accountability.
He said transparent, inclusive and accountable institutions were a pre-requisite for sustainable development that benefits the most vulnerable in every area, from health and education to economic prosperity and environmental protection.
On the occasion, Neil Buhne said corruption was a major obstacle for governance and development.
In Pakistan, UNDP works closely with government, communities and civil society in support of robust, inclusive and transparent institutions that benefit all Pakistanis, including the most marginalized. These include investments in innovation to increase citizen involvement in policy making, redesign public services, and develop local, holistic solutions to Pakistan’s complex development challenges.
DG FIA said the objectives of seminar were to renew and recommit key stakeholders within and outside of government in fight against corruption, provide an opportunity for stocktaking of government’s recent steps for promoting of transparency and accountability and generate informed debate on future of anti-corruption work in Pakistan and key priorities for action.

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