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National

March 10, 2018

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Population increase main challenge to sustainable growth: PM

ISLAMABAD: Expressing his concern over unchecked population growth Prime Minister Khaqan Abbasi stated that it is a major challenge in ensuring sustainable growth. He reminded that it needs immediate attention of the provincial governments and said that there is a need for greater investment for enhancing access and quality of service delivery in this sector especially for the people of far-flung areas and to integrate these programmes with health service delivery programmes being provided at gross root levels.

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Shahid Khaqan Abbasi articulated the views in his meeting with a delegation of Population Council headed by its Country Director Dr. Zeba A. Sathar at Prime Minister Office (PMO) on Friday. The delegation included Dr. Ali Mohammad Mir, Director Programmes, Ms. Seemin Ashfaq, Dr. Hamid Mukhtar, senior economist. Dr. Zeba A. Sathar presented an overview of the demography of the country and its impact on economic growth in comparison with other Muslim countries of the world as well as countries in the region.

The Prime Minister assured the delegation that the issue would be taken up with the provincial governments at the platform of Council of Common Interests (CCI) for a consensus-based national strategy.

High Commissioner of Sri Lanka Major General LK Jayanath C Perera also visited Prime Minister Shahid Abbasi. In his maiden meeting with the Premier the High Commissioner thanked government of Pakistan for facilitating Buddhists who travel to Pakistan for religious pilgrimage. He also conveyed the request of the Sri Lankan government for providing the ‘Sacred Tooth Relic of Lord Buddha’ which would be showcased during ‘Vesak Festival’ in Sri Lanka. The High Commissioner also expressed the gratitude of his government for the prompt provision of fertilizer by Pakistan.

The Prime Minister while conveying his warm regards for the leadership of Sri Lanka stated that Pakistan and Sri Lanka maintain friendly cooperation in all areas which needs to be further strengthened. The two sides should work together to revive the Saarc Forum as a vibrant platform for regional cooperation, Prime Minister Abbasi added.

Yet in another engagement Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan witnessed signing of MoU between Nadra, government of Pakistan and government of Somalia for provision of Nadra services to Somalia. The ceremony was also attended by Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal Chaudhary, Chairman Nadra Usman Mubeen and senior officials.

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