Reforms being introduced in various sectors: PM Imran Khan

ISLAMABAD – Prime Minister Imran Khan says the government is devising policies for the benefit of common man. Addressing the ceremony of achievements in 100 days of PTI government in Islamabad on Thursday, he said good intentions reap good results and the government is sincere to bring real change in the lives of people.

He said the employment opportunities are being created to improve the living conditions and standards of life for poor people.

The Prime Minister said a uniform education system will be brought into the country to eradicate the education apartheid. He said similarly reforms are also being made in the health sector. A task force is working to improve the conditions of government hospitals so that poor people avail standard health facilities. He said Health Cards will be given to all poor people across the country.

Imran Khan said a single authority will be created to devise and implement policies for poverty alleviation. He said corruption leads to poverty.

The Prime Minister said this menace increases poverty in the countries as it deprives the nation of their due rights.

He said there will be no future of the country, unless the scourge of corruption is crushed.

The Prime Minister said NAB is an independent institution for accountability and its performance can be further increased. He said the conviction rate by NAB is very low and it should be increased to bring more perpetrators of corruption to the justice.

Imran Khan said he visited abroad to meet the immediate financial needs of the country and he got an overwhelming response. He said an Asset Recovery Unit was established at the Prime Minister House that signed MoUs with 26 countries for gaining access to information regarding the assets of Pakistanis abroad.

The Prime Minister said we also signed an agreement today with Switzerland. He said the agreements signed with 26 countries reveal that 11 billion dollars of Pakistanis are stashed abroad. He said the information on bank accounts in UAE indicates that one  billion dollars of Pakistani are hidden there. However, the information of Iqama holders is not available. He said Pakistanis invested nine  billion dollars in properties in the UAE during the past some year.

The Prime Minister said FIA so far caught fake accounts of 375 billion rupees. He said PTI government is the first government that is actively taking steps against money laundering.

Imran Khan said the government is paying an interest of six billion rupees daily as interest on  loans.  He said land worth over 300 billion rupees was retrieved by Capital Development Aathority in its operations against encroachments.  He said Punjab has recovered land of 88,000 acres from the encroachment mafia.

Referring to growth of stunted children, the Prime Minister said a pilot project was completed to improve the health of mothers and children and now four million mothers and children will be given better diet to reduce stunted growth from current 43 percent to 30 percent.

He said the scope of Benazir Income Support Program will be enhanced. He said five billion rupees have been earmarked under Akhuwat Program to assist the poorer segments.

The Prime Minister said in order to bring the level of poverty down, special programs are being started in rural areas. He said Subsidies will be given to small farmers in order to increase agricultural productivity as well as improvement in socio-economic status of peasants.

He said new farm equipment will also be provided to the farmers. He said in order to enhance exports of livestock, animals will be immunized against diseases like foot and mouth.

Imran Khan said the fisheries sector will be promoted. He said Pakistan has marine fishery as well as fresh water fishery potential. 

He said the wet areas where lands cannot be utilized for agricultural purposes, shrimp farming businesses will be started.

Referring to shortage of water in the country, the Prime Minister said total cost of paving the water courses is 140 billion rupees. This will result in conserving a lot of water.

The Prime Minister said taxation system will be improved to increase revenue. He said only 72,000 persons have declared their monthly income above 200,000 rupees which is not a realistic figure.

Imran Khan said there is a lot of potential in tourism sector. He said Pakistan is blessed with a long coastline and beaches can be developed there.

He said Northern Areas have high mountain peaks which attract a large number of foreign tourists. More services and facilities will be created to enhance this sector.

He said there is also a huge scope of religious tourism in the country. He said four to five tourist resorts will be developed each year in different parts of the country.

Regarding austerity measures, the Prime Minister said Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Governor helped save 13 billion rupees of public expenditures. He said the austerity drive will be implemented across the federal and provincial governments to spend the money wisely.

The Prime Minister said there is a shortage of 10 million houses in the country. He said housing mortgage finance will be promoted in the country to enable people to construct homes.

Speaking at the ceremony, Advisor to Prime Minister on establishment Arbab Shahzad said revolutionary steps were taken to change the working culture of the government during this small period.

He said 18 out of 34 projects were completed while work continues on rest of the projects.

He said an asset recovery unit was established that detected properties worth 11 billion dollars abroad and notices were issued to thousands of persons who are not tax filers.

Arbab Shahzad said focus was laid on brining reforms in FBR as part of improving the tax machinery.

He said a local government system has been finalized that will work on the pattern of one already working in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and funds will also be provided to it.

An Economic Advisory Council comprising eminent economic experts was set up to give an economic direction and guidance to the government on economic affairs.

He said steps have also been taken to improve ease of doing business.

Advisor to the Prime Minister said work was done on delivery of speedy and inexpensive justice to the people by introducing legal reforms.

Arbab Shahzad said among the ongoing projects, first is creation of South Punjab province and a separate secretariat will be set up for South Punjab before June 30th next year.

Additional posts of Chief Secretary and IG Police and a separate development program will be introduced for South Punjab.

Arbab Shahzad said significant achievements have been made in erstwhile Fata Secretariat.