COAS calls on all stakeholders to participate in economic revival efforts

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Pakistan’s Chief of Army Staff, General Syed Asim Munir, has urged all stakeholders to fulfill their social responsibility and contribute to the country’s economic revival with unwavering hope. Speaking at the “Pakistan Minerals Summit” in Islamabad, he extended an invitation to foreign investors to participate in exploring the nation’s abundant mineral reserves.

General Munir emphasized the immense mining opportunities in Pakistan, achievable through collaborative efforts. To facilitate investments, the authorities will establish an investor-friendly system, aiming to reduce bureaucracy and delays.

The inaugural mineral summit introduced new rules for ease of doing business, benefiting both domestic and foreign investors, as mineral projects hold the key to success. The government, in partnership with various institutions, assured the formation of the Special Investment Facilitation Council (SIFC), unifying all stakeholders on a common platform.

Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, addressing the ceremony, stressed the importance of exploring untapped resources, including vast natural minerals and reserves, while also focusing on the development of agriculture, information technology, and industrial sectors. He expressed regret over the past 75 years, where precious natural deposits worth an estimated $6 trillion remained largely untapped, leading to economic challenges.

The premier highlighted previous instances, such as the establishment of Pakistan Steel Mills with Russian support in the 1970s and the hefty $10 billion penalty imposed on Pakistan in Reko Diq, which could have depleted the country’s foreign reserves.

Referring to the Thar coal mines reserves, the prime minister asserted that they are being harnessed for Pakistan’s development. The summit saw the attendance of federal ministers, foreign delegates, ambassadors, experts, relevant authorities, and investors.

General Munir’s inclusion in the Special Investment Facilitation Council, formed by Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif in June, aims to complement government efforts in tackling economic challenges. The government introduced an extensive “Economic Revival Plan” to capitalize on Pakistan’s untapped potential in key sectors, fast-track development projects, and encourage investment to overcome the economic crisis.

The country’s liquid foreign reserves currently stand at $13.534 billion, bolstered last month by the receipt of a $1.2 billion tranche from the International Monetary Fund under a short-term standby arrangement. Support from friendly countries, including Saudi Arabia and the UAE, also contributed to the increase in reserves.

As of July 14, the State Bank of Pakistan’s reserves surged by $4.2 billion to reach $8.7 billion, the highest level in nine months, thanks to financial assistance from bilateral and multilateral partners. Analysts praised this achievement, recognizing its positive impact on the nation’s balance of payments and investor confidence in the economy.

In conclusion, the call for collective responsibility and foreign investment, combined with a comprehensive economic revival plan, holds the promise of leveraging Pakistan’s abundant resources and driving the country towards a more prosperous future.