Govt aware of business community’s challenges: Khusro Bakhtiar

APP80-11 ISLAMABAD: October 11 - Federal Minister for Planning, Development and Reform Makhdoom Khusro Bukhtiar addressing during CEO Summit & Corporate Dinner with CEOs, Diplomats & Policy Makers. APP photo by Irshad Sheikh

ISLAMABAD, Oct 11 (APP):Federal Minister for Planning, Development and Reform Makhdoom Khusro Bakhtiar Thursday said the government was well aware of the challenges being faced by the business community and taking all possible measures to provide them an enabling environment to grow and contribute to national economy.
He said ” In today’s world, there are essentially three pillars sustaining any nation building process, the government, civil society and business,” adding that the nation’s development could be only achieved when these three worked together.
The Minister was addressing the ‘CEO Summit Islamabad’ organized by CEO Club Pakistan in collaboration with Planning Commission, Board of Investment and Privatization Commission here.
The event was attended by Secretary Planning Zafar Hasan, senior officials of the Ministry and a large number of business leaders, entrepreneurs, diplomats and policy makers.
He stated that the government’s primary role was to act as facilitator for sustainable and responsible business to flourish.
He said that the government had moved to reforming the economy and it expected the private sector corporations to step up and partnered with the government in redefining the country’s future.
The Minister added that the private sector’s potential to contribute to the treasury’s domestic revenues was critical for meeting the government’s developmental goals by financing essential public goods and services.
The minister noted that major roadblocks to growth had been the historically low private investment, little or no investment by business in R&D and domestic operations.
Pakistani businesses needed to step out of their comfort zones and invest in acquiring latest technology, business practices to become competitive at regional and international level and employing our growing youth bulge in value added industries of the future especially science and technology, he added.
The minister stated that sustainable development was best served where private sector positions itself to foster inclusive growth noting that “Our talented private sector has the potential to lift people out of poverty.”
He further said that evidence suggested that over 80% of jobs in developing countries were created by the private sector however unfortunately only 25% of the working-age population was engaged in productive employment.
He said that more than 80% of the workforce in Pakistan remained employed in informal sector jobs which needed to be changed.
The minister said that the government acknowledged the positive role the businesses had played in the development of the country and their ability to navigate tough political and economic cycles.
‘Now is the time that we work together to change the destiny of our country.”
Talking about CPEC, the Minister stated that the project was graduating from start-up phase to a more mature period in its development.
He underlined that the scope and base of CPEC was broadening and deepening adding that the mega project had the potential to spur GDP growth and transform Pakistan into a regional economic hub.
He stressed upon the industrialists to bridge the industrial divide between Pakistan and China by initiating joint ventures in various sectors including manufacturing, services, construction, agriculture and energy.
The Minister congratulated the best performing CEOs and companies on their achievements and hoped that they would continue to contribute to the country’s socio-economic development for a prosperous Pakistan.
Advisor to Prime Minister on Political Affair, Naeem ul Haq, speaking on the occasion said the present government was committed to provide free health and education to the poor people of the country.
He said that government would strengthen the local government system in the country adding that previous governments of Sindh and Punjab did not give power to local bodies system.