Highlighting Expats Potential

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Over 0.8 million Pakistani expatriates are playing key role in the economic uplift of Pakistan by transacting their earnings through proper banking channels. These expats are highly valuable for Pakistan and must be given due respect and regard. Prime Minister Imran Khan attached great importance to overseas Pakistanis and enjoy a good reputation among them, therefore, their capabilities should be put to use for national development. Remittances refers to inflows of migrants’ and short-term employee income transfers (personal remittances.  Remittances decreased to 5065 USD Million in the first quarter of 2019 from 5473 USD Million in the fourth quarter of 2018. Remittances in Pakistan averaged 2886.46 USD Million from 2002 until 2019, reaching an all time high of 5557 USD Million in the third quarter of 2018 and a record low of 906 USD Million in the third quarter of 2003.

The expatriate community has encouraged during the recent visit of Prime Minister Imran Khan, therefore, their expertise and resources should be utilized for the development of the country. The expats must be provided opportunities to serve the country while the government can consider issuing new bonds for them to attract investment. The government issued diaspora bonds on January 31 which attracted investment of $26 million against initial estimates of $3 billion. The government had announced a profit of 6.75 percent which is more than double than what other countries offer while profit in local currency was above seven percent.

The move is  not well advertised and the timings were not good as the economy was in trouble while government officials, opposition, economic experts and international institutions were painting a bleak picture. Exports are going down while expenses were increasing which sent a negative signal to the investors. After a loan from the IMF, the situation has improved to some extent but the expected growth rate of 2.4 percent, erosion in the value of the local currency, increased interest rates and policy resulting in economic contraction is still seen as a threat by some investors.

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