Shehbaz lays focus on resources creation to revive ailing economy

Tells cabinet members country is facing string of challenges: Says only through hard work govt can tackle inflation, unemployment: Cabinet told public exchequer suffered huge loss due to subsidy on petrol, diesel

By: News Desk
Published: 10:40 AM, 20 Apr, 2022
Shehbaz lays focus on resources creation to revive ailing economy
Caption: TV grab.
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Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif on Wednesday declared that more resources will be created to revive the ailing economy in order to tackle inflation and unemployment, reported 24NewsHD TV channel.

Addressing the maiden meeting of his cabinet in Islamabad, Shehbaz Sharif maintained “There is no magic wand and the only way to move forward is to work very hard as there are problems everywhere but we have to find resources.”

He told his cabinet members to roll up their sleeves to meet the challenges of inflation, unemployment, poverty and loadshedding, for turning the desperation into an opportunity of progress and public relief.

The prime minister, chairing the maiden meeting of his cabinet which took oath on Tuesday, believed that their dedicated and sincere efforts could turn the tide and make the country cope with the challenges successfully.

He congratulated the cabinet members coming from different political parties of the ruling coalition, said the federal cabinet comprised seasoned politicians with vast experience and competence having huge struggle to their credit.

The prime minister said the current government came into being consequent to a no-confidence motion against the former prime minister. The incumbent government is based on huge coalition which was being applauded as well as criticized.

He expressed the hope that despite representing their own political parties, the coalition members would move on setting aside their personal biases with just one aim to serve the masses.

He also reiterated his resolve for making untiring efforts to come up to the people’s expectation.

“I call this a war cabinet as we are fighting against inflation, unemployment and poverty which we inherited from the previous government. The previous government had badly failed,” he remarked.

The prime minister said though the cabinet formation faced a bit delay, yet if was done consisting of very competent and experienced members.

He said the cabinet members would be briefed about the load-shedding and the factors behind it which would follow the decision making by the cabinet.

He urged the cabinet to pay attention to the issues faced by the federating units particularly Balochistan.

Recounting the challenges, the prime minister said the country was under immense debt burden but it was upon the incumbent government to overcome the challenges despite having limited resources.  

“Today, we have to face the challenge collectively and should not evade any sacrifice. We will have to respond propaganda through facts, which would ultimately bury the lies,” he remarked.

Recalling the immense victimization of all opposition parties during the previous government, the prime minister said corruption was rampant during last three and half years.

Citing the successful journey of development of Germany and Japan, the prime minister said despite being badly hit by the second world war, both the countries bounced back and achieved excellence just on the basis of their struggle.

He also referred to the teachings of Holy Quran, Holy Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) as well as Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah advising the followers to put in their best to achieve excellence and change the fate.

Shehbaz told the cabinet members that besides the politicians, the bureaucracy also faced huge pressure from the previous government which wanted them to act as an approver against that time opposition.

He said the government machinery including bureaucracy, doctors, engineers and others needed the backing and encouragement by the government to make them perform better.

Earlier, the federal cabinet held its maiden meeting under the chairmanship of Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif with its focus on economic and political situation prevailing in the country.  The meeting held at the PM House took up several matters of importance including economic situation, energy and law and order.

The cabinet was briefed that the growth rate of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) was 6.1 percent between 2017 and 2018, before the start of the PTI government, whereas, it was at 4 percent only between 2021 and 2022, in the last year of the PTI government.

It was also briefed that the national exchequer had to bear a loss of Rs67 billion due to the subsidy given on petrol and diesel during the months of April and May apparently for political point-scoring.

The meeting was also told that the national exchequer bore Rs52 per litre loss on diesel and Rs22 per litre loss on petrol.

Minister for Information and Broadcasting Marriyum Aurangzeb meanwhile said that the federal cabinet was briefed on the economic disaster, unprecedented criminally irresponsible fiscal acts during the past four years by Imran Khan’s government.

In a tweet, the newly-appointed minister said that during Imran Khan’s rule, inflation, poverty, unemployment, debts and deficits rose.

Marriyum Aurangzeb said that Imran Khan’s term was marred by corruption and this was the reality of Naya Pakistan.

Quoting the figures, she said that in fiscal year 2017-18, GDP growth stood at 6.1 percent which fell to only four percent in 2021-22.

She said that in 2017-18, the CPI inflation was at 3.9 percent which shoot up to 10.9 percent in 2021-22 whereas the SPI inflation which was at 0.9 percent in 2017-18 increased to 17.3 percent. The food inflation which stood at 2.3 percent during 2017-18 shoot up to 10.2 percent, she maintained.

The first meeting of the federal cabinet took up a seven-point agenda during which the federal cabinet was briefed by various divisions.

The cabinet members were first briefed on the e-cabinet system. They were also briefed by finance division about the current economic situation and challenges.

The Power and Division secretary presented a report on energy and fuel issues before the cabinet.

Reporter: Awais Kiyani