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Privatisation of state assets within 2020: PM Imran Khan

Top Story

March 5, 2020

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan directed for the completion of privatisation process within the timeline with better inter-ministerial coordination, saying sell-off of non-profit-making entities is in the national interest.

He said this while presiding over a meeting on Wednesday to review the progress so far made in connection with the privatisation of state institutions and properties. The meeting was attended by Minister for Planning and Development Asad Umar, Minister for Privatisation Muhammad Mian Soomro, Adviser to PM on Finance Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh, Adviser to PM on Trade and Commerce Abdul Razak Dawood, Special Assistant to PM on Information and Broadcasting Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan and Adviser to PM on Reforms Dr Ishrat Hussain.

The meeting was informed that during the current year, seven institutions and properties would be privatised and these included two RLNG power plants, SME Bank, Services International Hotel, Jinnah Convention Centre, Islamabad and 27 other state-owned properties. The prime minister was told that these transactions would be completed in May and June this year. Addressing the forum, prime minister said that non-profit-making entities and unused state-owned properties privatisation was in the national interest, as it would not only lessen the burden on national kitty but also provide resources for other socialand masses’ welfare-oriented projects. Meanwhile, the prime minister said Pakistan is moving on the road to development with accelerated development spending. In a tweet, he said the rupee is stable, the current account deficit is down by 73 percent, exports are growing and cement sales have risen.

In his reaction, Pakistan Peoples’ Party (PPP) Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari said that his party would not let the puppet government privatise the national institutions.

Addressing a ceremony in Lahore on Wednesday, he said whenever a puppet government comes into power, it starts selling the country’s assets, adding that his party won’t let the government sell those. Bilawal went on to say that the judiciary is independent and they won’t let a puppet government privatise national institutions. He said that they had been told that the economy is on the right track and international institutions including Moody’s are admitting Pakistan’s economic progress but the government is bargaining with the International Monetary Fund over economic rights of labourers.