Asian Development Bank Pledge $7billion for Development Projects
- Over the next three years, Pakistan will get $7 billion in fresh assistance from the Asian Development Bank for various development projects.
- The assistance is aimed at developing the country’s social security, urban services, transport, agriculture and water resources, education, trade, and tourism.
- ADB is also planning to start a new Country Partnership Strategy (CPS) which will be in line with the Pakistan government’s economic development program.
Vice President of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) met Prime Minister Imran Khan and reaffirmed ADB’s support for Pakistan’s development priorities.
ADB Vice President, Shixin Chen, is on his first official two-day visit to Pakistan. This decision was taken during the meeting between Prime Minister Imran Khan, Vice President ADB and other ADB and government officials.
The decision was taken during the meeting Imran Khan here on Thursday, the Dawn newspaper reported.
Assistance worth $7billion:
The Asian Development Bank is planning to provide $7 billion to Pakistan for various development projects and policy-based programs over the next three years.
This assistance is under ADB’s country operations business plan 2020–2022, aimed at developing the country’s social protection, urban services, energy security, transport, agriculture, and water resources, education, trade, and tourism. This will be helpful in spurring inclusive and sustainable economic growth.
Five Year Country Partnership Strategy:
Asian Development Bank (ADB) is also planning to start a five-year Country Partnership Strategy (CPS) from 2020 to 2024.
The Country Partnership Strategy will be in line with the government’s economic development program as well as ADB’s 2030 Strategy.
The new Country Partnership Strategy will define development priorities to support Pakistan’s economic transformation programs. It will also complement efforts by other development partners.
Highlighting ADB’s Relationship with Pakistan:
“Over the last five decades, ADB has an enduring development partnership with Pakistan. Pakistan and ADB have worked together to develop the country’s key infrastructure; promote exports and private sector efficiency. It also worked to reform public sector management, develop the country’s financial market, improve urban services, provide emergency assistance, and prioritize social sector development,” Vice President ADB said.
Furthermore, ADB is committed to support the government’s reform agenda to promote inclusive and sustainable economic growth, develop key infrastructure, strengthen regional cooperation, attract investments, and promote industry and the private sector.
Details from the Visit:
During his official visit to Pakistan, Shixin Chen met Adviser to the Prime Minister on Finance and Revenue Abdul HafeezShaikh, Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Social Protection and Poverty Alleviation SaniaNishtar, Minister for Energy Omar Ayub Khan, Federal Minister for Planning and Development MakhdoomKhusroBakhtyar, Minister for Economic Affairs Division HammadAzhar and other government officials.
Chen also visited the Hassanabdal-Havelian Motorway (E-35). The Motorway was constructed with the assistance provided by ADB and the United Kingdom’s Department for International Development. He also visited Pehur Irrigation Project, which is underway in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and is being funded by ADB.
$5000million Loan Agreement:
Some days earlier, the Asian Development Bank signed a $500million loan agreement with Pakistan to support the first phase of the Trade and Competitiveness Program in the country.
The loan agreement was signed by Economic Affairs Division Secretary Noor Ahmed and ADB’s Country Director Xiaohong Yang.
The Minister for Economic Affairs Muhammad HammadAzhar witnessed the loan signing ceremony and requested the ADB to further scale up its assistance to Pakistan both for program lending and project financing.
Trade and Competitiveness Program:
The Trade and Competitiveness Program would help Pakistan in promoting macroeconomic stability, boost economic growth by facilitating improved trade competitiveness and improve export performance.
The government has introduced important tariff and tax-related policy reforms under this program to assist the country’s export sector and improve its competitiveness internationally.
Policy-based lending by the Asian Development Bank will not only strengthen the foreign exchange reserves but will also provide fiscal space to the government and boost economic activities in the country.
The government would remain fully committed to improving governance, bring economic reforms and achieve sustainable development.
The government aims to put the economy of Pakistan on the path of sustainable and balanced growth and increase per capita income.
ADB – Pakistan’s Leading Development Partner:
Due to weak and unbalanced growth, Pakistan is facing economic challenges and its economy is at a critical juncture and needs an ambitious and bold set of reforms.
Pakistan has also received billions of dollars in financial aid packages from friendly countries like China, Saudi Arabia and the UAE in recent months.
According to the Economic Survey 2018-19, Pakistan’s economy grew at an average rate of 3.29% in the fiscal year 2018-19 against an ambitious target of 6.2% set in last year’s budget.
The Asian Development Bank (ADB) is one of the leading development partners of the country and fully supported the government’s vision and policies.
The ADB is providing its support for policy reforms and project financing in the key priority areas such as energy, road, social sector, water and irrigation, and urban services.
The incumbent government is committed to a range of structural reforms to the country’s trade environment in order to improve its export performance, reduce the current account deficit, and drive economic growth.