Govt committed to facilitating foreign, local investors: PM

PM Imran says industrial development among his top priorities; directs officials to expedite work on housing projects; seeks steps to ensure availability of edible items at affordable rates

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan has said that the government is committed to providing all possible facilitation to international companies to invest in various sectors of Pakistan.

Talking to a delegation of Abu Dhabi Group of Companies on Friday, Prime Minister Imran said that Pakistan offers enormous investment opportunities, adding that the government has taken multiple steps to ensure ease of doing business in the country, including assistance to foreign investors through one-window services.

Expressing confidence in the investment-friendly policies of the government, the delegation appreciated Imran Khan’s vision to promote investment in the country and measures to facilitate foreign investment companies. It also expressed keen interest in increasing the scope investment in Pakistan in future.

Separately, Members of National Assembly (MNAs) Asim Nazir and Khurram Shahzad, along with Shahid Nazir from Faisalabad, called on Prime Minister Imran Khan on Friday. They presented suggestions to the PM regarding industrial development in Faisalabad and also shed light on steps taken on priority basis to resolve problems in their respective constituencies.

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Speaking on the matter, the premier said that industrial development is the top priority of the government as it is critical for job creation and enhancing exports.

Meanwhile, the PM directed the authorities concerned to immediately start work on the housing projects for the poor and low-income groups. He said this while chairing a meeting on Friday, which reviewed progress on a range of projects, including Ravi Urban Development, Central Business District, relocation of Walton Airport and the provision low cost housing units to the people in the surroundings of Punjab.

Prime Minister Imran directed that timelines should be set for completion of the low cost housing units.

The meeting was informed that low-cost houses of three to five marla will initially be constructed in 25 to 27 districts of Punjab and later its scope will be expanded to 87 different locations. In the initial phase, the Punjab government will provide land and capital for the project.

Regarding Ravi Urban Development Project, PM Imran stressed that the project is of immense importance for the socioeconomic development of the people of Lahore. This will not only create economic activities but also provide job opportunities to the people, he said.

The meeting was further informed that matters pertaining to the design of Ravi City Project have reached the final stage, and that steps are being taken to hold an investors conference in this regard.

On the Central Business District Project and relocation of Walton Airport, the meeting was informed that the commercial, retail and residential zoning of the projects is being done as per the international standards.

Moreover, in another meeting, Prime Minister Imran Khan directed the officials to take timely measures to ensure uninterrupted availability of edible items at affordable rates and to bring down the prices of essential items ahead of the holy month of Ramadan.

The premier issued these directions while chairing a review meeting regarding essential items, especially the availability of wheat and sugar, on Friday.

The PM instructed the officials to guarantee uninterrupted availability of essential items at the Utility Stores Corporation (USC) outlets and to continuously apprise him regarding the monitoring of prices.

Finance Minister Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh informed the meeting that the Sensitive Price Indicator (SPI) of the last seven weeks showed a decline in prices of onion, tomato, chicken, and meat.

The meeting was briefed about steps for release of wheat as well as Economic Coordination Committee’s (ECC) decision to import sugar and its impact on reduction of sugar prices.

Participants of the meeting were informed that the market has become stable as a result of the government’s decision to import wheat.

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