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August 28, 2020

PM satisfied with progress in housing, construction sector

Top Story

August 28, 2020

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan Thursday expressed satisfaction over the progress being made in the housing and construction sector and said that the development of the construction sector was key to the stability and growth of the country's economy.

"Therefore, the development of this sector and the investors associated with this sector and facilitating builders and developers is a top priority for the government," he said this while presiding over the weekly meeting of the National Coordination Committee for Housing, Construction and development here.

The prime minister directed all the chief secretaries to expedite the process of approval of pending applications for construction and to ensure that decisions on all applications are completed within the stipulated time.

Minister for Information and Broadcasting Shibli Faraz, Special Assistants Malik Amin Aslam, Lt Gen (R) Asim Saleem Bajwa, Dr Shahbaz Gill, Governor SBP, Chairman New Pakistan Housing Authority Lt Gen (R) Anwar Ali Haider, secretaries of relevant ministries and other officers were present in the meeting. The chief secretaries attended the meeting through video link.

The CDA chairman apprised the prime minister of the concessions given in the construction sector in the Islamabad Capital Territory, the approvals given so far for commercial, residential construction, projects to be started in the near future, Park Enclave III project and Blue Area. He also briefed the forum on the progress in auction of commercial plots and complete automation of CDA. The prime minister was informed that the fee for floor area ratio has been reduced by 55%. Insurance and mortgage facilities have been simplified. Fees for multiple use of land have been provided. Lease issues have been resolved. A representative of the Islamabad Chamber has been included in the design committee. The problems of E-11 have been solved.

He said that since mid-June, 429 out of 578 applications for residential and commercial projects have been approved while work on the rest is in progress. The CDA chairman said the projects would create 15,000 to 20,000 jobs. Referring to the Park Enclave III project, it was informed that this project was launched in the last few days in which so far there has been a very encouraging response from the people.

The auction of commercial plots in Blue Area will be held on September 22, 21 and 23. The chief secretary Punjab said that since July 01, 2129 applications have been received out of which 1285 have been approved while 844 are in the process of approval. The meeting was informed that the scope of the business registration system has been extended to the entire province in a single day.

The chief secretary Khyber Pakhtunkhwa said that out of 1935 applications, 802 commercial, 332 residential and 64 housing societies have been approved while the rest are under consideration.

The chief secretary Sindh and the chief secretary Balochistan also briefed the prime minister on the approvals given so far and the steps taken to simplify the system. The chief secretary Balochistan said that the tax rate has been reduced in Balochistan on the pattern of Punjab and work is underway to provide portal and one window facility for those involved in the construction sector.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Imran Khan chaired a meeting on the promotion of information technology in the country. The meeting was attended by Minister for Information Technology Syed Aminul Haq, Minister for Information Shibli Faraz, Minister for Industries Hammad Azhar, Advisors Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh, Dr Ishrat Hussain, Abdul Razak Dawood, Special Assistant Dr Shahbaz Gill, federal secretaries, FBR chairman, Governor, representatives of SBP and various companies belonging to the IT sector also participated in the meeting. The prime minister was given a detailed briefing on the role of the IT sector in the national economy, the country’s exports in the sector, and the obstacles facing the development of the sector. Addressing the meeting, the prime minister said that the youth of the country have immense potential in the field of IT. He said that the development of the sector would not only help the youth to utilise their potential and create job opportunities but also increase the country’s exports. The prime minister reiterated his commitment that the development of the IT sector is the top priority of the government and all possible steps will be taken in this regard. The prime minister directed the FBR chairman to review the tax issues faced by the companies in the IT sector on priority basis and ensure their solution.