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Tunis, Egypt situation incomparable to Pakistan: PM

By Haris Afzal on Sunday, January 30, 2011 with 1 comment

MULTAN: Prime Minister Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani said on Sunday that the government was confidently moving forward with reconciliation process and concerns of PML-N Quaid Mian Nawaz Sharif,if any, would be addressed.

Talking to newsmen after inspecting work on new terminal of Multan Airport, he said, “We are satisfied with the talks and PML-N leader Ishaq Dar is also satisfied. However, if Mian Nawaz Sharif has any concern, we will discuss it with the opposition team and address it.”

When asked about a recent statement of US Vice President Joe Biden, Gilani said that the situation in Egypt and Tunisia could not be compared with that of Pakistan. “Our institutions are working and democracy is functional.”

The Prime Minister said that the national economy was under pressure but not in crisis. It was under pressure due to four factors, including terrorism, extremism, global recession, floods and electricity shortage.

“These are the main reasons. However, despite passing through a difficult phase, Pakistan’s foreign exchange reserves are at an unprecedented high level of US$ 17 billion, the stock exchange index that was oscillating between 5,000 to 6,500 points when we took over, is now touching 12,500 points, our exports have reached US$11 billion and may double by the end of this fiscal year, and foreign remittances are over US$ 10 billion,” the Prime Minister said.

He said that the government’s prudent policies ensured food security in the country as growers were getting a good price for their produce. He said that better financial conditions of the farming community ensured food security and better returns helped growers play an active role in the national economy.

The Prime Minister urged the international community to honour the pledges they had made for the assistance of the flood-hit people. He also thanked the international community for providing the much needed help so far in the shape of tents, food, blankets, mobile hospitals and homes for the affected communities.

Gilani said that according to the damage assessment report the floods had caused US $ 10 billion losses to Pakistan. It destroyed infrastructure, road links and bridges, and washed away standing crops and homes.

The Prime Minister said that the government was providing free seeds and fertilizers to the farmers to enable them cultivate wheat crop and stand on their own feet. In addition to the rehabilitation of infrastructure, the government also distributed Rs 20,000 each among the flood-hit people in a transparent manner through smart cards under a national strategy. These people would get Rs 80,000 more, which would help them rebuild their homes and move forward, he added.

He said that the Pakistani nation has the resilience and courage to survive against odds.

He pointed out that the 2005 earthquake was a regional catastrophe and people from all parts of the country had rallied to support the calamity-hit people in a big way. However, floods played havoc in all the four provinces besides Gilgit-Baltistan and AJK and the people donated Rs 6.5 billion in the Prime Minister’s relief Fund.

He said that the government sensitized the international community on the flood havoc and the United Nations declared it a big catastrophe.

Category: Pakistan News

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