Govt’s prudent policies strengthened economy: FM
Govt starts contacting allies for Army Act amendment
Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi has said that international institutions are acknowledging that Pakistan economy has improved considerably due to the prudent policies of the incumbent government.
Talking to newsmen flanked by Muttahida Quomi Movement (MQM) leaders here on Sunday, he said with the efforts of the Prime Minister Imran Khan and the PTI government have succeeded to bring economic stability in the country.
He said that the government is reaching out to its allies as well as opposition parties in Sindh and the centre to gain their support for amending the Army Act to grant extension in the tenure to Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa beyond six months, and a meeting in this regard has been scheduled for December 5 in the federal capital.
Qureshi thanked MQM-P, a party allied with the government, for standing by the ruling party in difficult times and for extending its cooperation in various situations.
“Prime Minister Imran Khan took charge when the country was facing internal economic challenges and we are all aware of that,” he said, adding that the in those difficult times, the premier approached friendly countries for assistance to avoid economic bankruptcy and scored a negotiated deal with the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
The foreign minister said that the country’s economy is stable and the currency has gone up by Rs4-5 against the dollar due to foreign investments. “Economic indicators point towards the fact that we have stepped out of a crisis,” he said, adding that now the next big challenge was to convert this stability into economic growth so that the government can meet the expectations of the people that brought it to power. He said that voters are well aware of the difficulties the government had to face and are aware of the role played by the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) and MQM-P to tackle challenges in Sindh. “Voters across the country are well-informed and Karachi is one of the most politically mature cities because when the people of the metropolis are presented with the facts, they are wise and can sift the truth from false narratives,” he added.
Qureshi said that the government and its key ally have reviewed the situation and come to a similar conclusion, whether it is the national scenario, economic scenario or the local government situation.
He said that it is because of these facts that the prime minister has invited its allies and opposition parties to hold a meeting with him in December. “We discussed this today and received an educational input, therefore, we have decided that our talks in December can help us make more informed decisions which are beneficial for our people,” he added.
About local issues, the Foreign Minister said Karachi is the city of political wisdom and we met today to address the issues of the province.
He said that PTI and MQM-Pakistan ideas are quite similar and MQM-Pakistan has always cooperated with PTI in every situation.
Speaking on the occasion, Siddiqui appreciated the foreign minister’s visit to Karachi and his willingness to hold a meeting with party members.
He said that MQM-P’s policy on national issues is clear and the party has always extended unconditional support in this regard. “MQM-P will always extend its support to democratic governments. We will not only continue our journey of cooperation but will now quicken its pace,” he added.
Talking about the situation in Karachi, the IT minister said that various cities of Sindh have been facing economic terrorism for the past 11 years and are in dire need of immediate moral, political and legal support. “Sindh’s cities, especially Karachi, have sacrificed more than their obligations and the metropolis’ contribution alone in the sales tax is 89 per cent,” he said, adding that these numbers show how willing Sindh is to fulfill its responsibilities towards the country.
“Karachi provides sustenance for the entire country. The government should focus on running Karachi so that the country’s economy can run too since the metropolis is the economy’s engine,” he further said.
The IT minister said even though the government faced multiple challenges in the start, the economy has been stabilised. He said that the only request of the people of province is that they be given due attention and the party’s demands are in line with the problems it has witnessed in the past 30-35 years. “The government is working on those, but the pace is so slow that on many fronts it does not seem any work is being done,” he added.
Earlier in the day, a high-level delegation of the PTI comprising FM Qureshi and Sindh Governor Imran Ismail, visited the headquarters of coalition partner, MQM-P. The current overall political situation, local government election, Karachi and Hyderabad development package announced by federal government were discussed in the meeting.