Hafeez Shaikh outlines govt’s economic measures to cope with Covid-19

ISLAMABAD: Adviser to Prime Minister on Finance and Revenue Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh on Wednesday addressed the Annual Microfinance Conference (AMC) as a guest of honour.

The adviser on the occasion outlined the National Financial Inclusion Strategy (NFIS), which aims to “achieve inclusive economic growth through promotion of small and medium enterprises, ensure affordable access to finance for farmers, facilitate low-cost housing finance and provide Shariah-compliant banking solutions”.

He also highlighted the proactive measures taken by the government to lessen the adverse economic impact of Covid-19, including loans deferred for a year and Rozgar Scheme (payroll protection).

“Over three million borrowers benefitted with Rs140bn loans rescheduled or deferred during the current crisis. The Rozgar Scheme also proved to be highly effective in improving liquidity position and saving millions of jobs,” he added.

The adviser said due to prudent and timely policies of the government, economic indicators were improving continuously; large scale manufacturing registered 4.8pc growth, with cement recording 20pc growth (100pc capacity utilization), besides significant increase in sale of cars, motorbikes and tractors during July-October 2020.

He noted that Moody’s had upgraded Pakistan’s economic outlook to ‘stable’ in August 2020.

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