ISLAMABAD, Mar 13 (APP):Minister of State for Finance Rana Muhammad Afzal Khan Tuesday inaugurated a three-day exhibition to attract more local as well as foreign investors in diverse fields, projecting conducive environment in the country and business-friendly policies introduced by the government.
The show titled ‘Pakistan Capital Investment Summit and Expo-2018’, has been organized by Pakistan Guarantee Export Corporation Limited in collaboration with Board of Investment (BOI), Ministries of Finance and Overseas Pakistanis and Human Resource Development.
A number of stakeholders including National Bank of Pakistan, Allied Bank, NBP Fullerton Asset Management Limited, Al Meezan, Bank Al Habib, PIEDMC, HABIBMETRO, AWT Investments, Bank Alfalah, PSX, Bank of Punjab, Jubilee General Insurance, State Life Insurance Company of Pakistan have set up their stalls at Pakistan-China Friendship Center to facilitate visitors and apprise them about their business-friendly policies.
Earlier, addressing participants of the inaugural ceremony, the minister said “Pakistan of 2018 has changed and is ready for investment as it has created infrastructure and environment that is conducive to bring in investment.”
During last four years, Afzal said Pakistan had become an attractive destination for investors as it had traversed a great distance from hopeless country to a hopeful and positive state.
He said when the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) government took over in 2013, it set up four major challenges called four ‘Es’ – Extremism, Energy, Economy and Education, adding that on all four fronts “we made a remarkable turnaround.”
The minister said Pakistan effectively overcome the menace of terrorism and became as good as most countries in the world, almost ended the electricity load-shedding as domestic consumers were not getting 20 to 22 hours supply a day, who were facing 18 to 22-hour outages, industrial sector was now receiving uninterrupted power supply, put national economy on consistent path of development and made significant progress in education sector.’
Now, he said, Pakistan had more foreign exchange reserves and its rating was improving and being acknowledged by international institutions.
He said before the PML-N government, the national economy was increasing at an average rate of three percent for the last ten years, but now it was growing at a pace of over five percent for the last three years, adding “our tax collection has doubled in four years from Rs 2 trillion to Rs 4.103 trillion, transfers to provinces have also doubled and development outlay has tripled. We have grown economy supporting our development portfolio of over 9 billion dollars.”
Highlighting importance of China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), he said, the project was fulfilling Pakistan’s deficiency in infrastructure sector and bringing remarkable foreign investment.
He assured that Pakistani laws provided full security to foreign investment as they were compatible to practices being followed in the world, adding “the laws that governs or regulates security of investment in Pakistan are today as goods as anywhere else in the world. Foreign investment is fully protected in Pakistan by law.”
He underlined the need for attracting big investments and encouraging small entrepreneurs to give a further boost to economic activities in Pakistan, reminding the BOI of its key role in facilitating and encouraging investors.
He said Pakistan was transforming into the world’s biggest market place due to the Gwadar port and CPEC, terming it an ‘enormous’ opportunity for investors.