Govt empowering youth to serve as drivers for growth: PM
Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif Friday said the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) was not mere a route, but was an "economic revolution for the entire region" and would strengthen economies of the regional countries.
He was talking to Bill Winters, Group Chief Executive of Standard Chartered who called on him here on the sidelines of the meeting of the World Economic Forum. Bill Winters said the CPEC would attract the banking sector as with the initiation of the second phase of the project, a number of industrial and economic zones would be established. He said his bank has already started work in this regard.
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said his government has complete faith in the private sector and its contribution in growth of the national economy. "We are facilitating the private sector through a liberal economic regime," he said. He said country's foreign exchange reserves were at their highest level and were increasing at a fast pace, owing to the confidence of investors and the robust economy. Bill Winters said his bank has an "overwhelmingly positive view of economy in Pakistan where investment and capital were growing."
He said Standard Chartered Bank was one of the biggest conduits in Pakistan for overseas capital. He said keeping in view the positive trends in Pakistan's economy, he was looking up for doubling his business in Pakistan. "Fast growth of Pakistan economy is one of the major attractions for foreign investors," he said and added that his bank was investing in power, infrastructure, PIA and other sectors of economy. Winters said Pakistan was offering exciting business opportunities to foreign investors and the banking sector.
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif also held a meeting with Azerbaijan President Ilham Aliyev, on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, spokesman of the foreign ministry here said in a statement.
Federal Minister of Finance Ishaq Dar, Commerce Minister Khurram Dastagir and Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs, Tariq Fatemi, were also present during the meeting. In their first interaction the two leaders discussed a wide array of bilateral and international issues, the spokesman said.
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif underscored the need for enhancing bilateral trade, improving connectivity and strengthening defence ties with Azerbaijan. Pakistan and Azerbaijan already enjoy a robust partnership with strong cooperation in many areas. The two countries also support each other on Nagorno-Karabakh and Kashmir issues. Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif extended an invitation to President Ilham Aliyev and the first lady to visit Pakistan.
Nawaz Sharif Friday said his government was transforming its human capital into a driver for growth and development by empowering its youth and providing them loans to help them start business and generate employment. The Prime Minister in an audience with Queen Maxima of Netherlands here at the World Economic Forum Congress Centre, said his government was working to provide the youth, particularly the women, greater access to education, economic resources, and employment opportunities, to enable them become equal partners in national economic development.