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Government will construct Dasu, Bhasha dams simultaneously: Dar




  • Finance Minister Ishaq Dar has said that Pakistan’s introduction of key reforms and measures to fix the national economy have bolstered international confidence as top world institutions have expressed their willingness to partner in the country’s development. 

    Senator Dar, who is leading a Pakistani team of economic managers to the IMF-World Bank meetings, was upbeat after holding a series of discussions with leaders of financial institutions and his counterparts from several countries on Thursday. “At each forum our efforts have been appreciated and now the world financial institutions acknowledged a seriousness on part of the government led by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif towards addressing long-delayed issues and pulling the country out of its economic woes”, he told APP after meeting with Managing Director of the World Bank. 

    The PML-N government is implementing its election manifesto and the world now recognises that Pakistan is striving to move the economy forward in its own national interest. Regarding his meeting with MD World Bank, Ms Sri Mulyani Indrawati, the finance minister said he conveyed the government’s decision that it has undertaken simultaneously to build both Dasu and Diamer-Bhasha dams. 

    Pakistan, he said, is getting support from the World Bank and other institutions while a study on Diamer-Bhasha dam is also under way. “We will start our project without waiting for foreign studies – we will construct both dams in line with our national interest”. The completion of the two projects would not only add more than 9000 MW of power to the system but also help maintain massive water reservoirs, he added. 

    Earlier, the finance minister had useful meetings with his counterparts from Afghanistan and Iran, and president of Japan International Co-operation Agency (JICA). Dar also come away with a positive takeaway from his meetings with the US officials. He met with USAID Administrator Rajiv Shah, US Deputy Secretary of State William Burns and Under Secretary of Treasury David Cohen. 

    He said the US has declared Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s October 23 visit to the White House for talks with President Barack Obama as official working meeting. “As we move forward with reforms and recovery agenda, Pakistan will get the importance it deserves”, he added. Meanwhile, the finance minister also addressed a gathering of Pakistan Bank Fund Staff Association that comprises World Bank and IMF employees of Pakistani origin. He informed the experts of some bold and difficult reforms and austerity measures the government has put in place to revive the national economy. 

    Copyright Associated Press of Pakistan, 2013

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