PML-N resolving people’s problems
Faisal Khawar Butt
Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi Monday said a country can only progress if there was political stability and continuity of policies and said Pakistan Muslim League-N has the honour of accomplishing those tasks that were abandoned by the previous governments.
Addressing a gathering at the Sialkot Chamber of Commerce and on his day-long visit to the industrial city, the Prime Minister said “we have put the country on the path of progress and prosperity and InshAllah it will continue.”
Abbasi said the PML-N has taken the country forward on path of progress and prosperity owing to the dynamic vision and policies of Muhammad Nawaz Sharif and said the economic situation of the country today was far better than what it was in 2013. He reiterated that the country’s GDP was destined to rise to 6 per cent and pointed out that had there been no sit-ins and politics of protests and allegations, the economic situation of country would have been far better today.
He said the PML-N has put good governance in practice and accomplished tasks that were deemed impossible by previous governments. In this regard, he mentioned the energy crisis that plagued the country in the past and said today both electricity and gas were in abundance in the country.
He said if the government continues to pursue the policies of Nawaz Sharif, all ills of the country would end.
He said efforts were underway to lessen the cost of gas and electricity besides improving their availability and pointed out that the Council of Common Interest would discuss the issue and take steps in this regard.
He said the previous PML-N government had completed over 500 km of motorway, while work was underway on 1800 km long road sections, which, he said was unprecedented in the country. The National Highways Authority has undertaken Rs 150 billion projects and it would transform the entire communication infrastructure of the country, lessen distances, speed up economic growth and boost trade and industry.
Abbasi said the government has a long list of development projects that were underway and said since he assumed his office, he has been inaugurating a project every week.
The Prime Minister lauded the Sialkot businessmen for meeting international standards, improving quality and enhancing exports, besides improving their city. He said businessmen from other cities need to emulate them and learn from their experiences.
The Prime Minister said the country should aim for over US 50 billion exports, as US 20-22 billion was not enough for a dynamic country like Pakistan and asked the business community to make more efforts in boosting exports.
He recalled the serious threat of terrorism that had once bogged down Pakistan and said the situation on this front too was far better and the last remnants of terrorists were now on the run.
He said Pakistan has been spending huge resources on fighting extremism and terrorism and the business environment today was very conducive for local and foreign investors in all spheres.
He said the people of Pakistan had on the right to ask the previous governments; before 2013 that what has been their output.
He regretted the dismal low number of income tax filers in the country and said there was an urgent need to boost it up on urgent basis. He said the government was working to make tax filing easier, widen its scope, besides simplifying the procedures.
He said Advisor on Finance Miftah Ismail has been tasked to look into the issues raised by the business community of Sialkot and assured that the issue of Sales Tax refund would be expedited on urgent basis. He said State Bank has also been asked to plug the loopholes and make it easy for businessmen.
Referring to the demands raised by the business community, he said the PML-N government was working to have a university in every District as it believed that the countries that do not invest in imparting quality education, would lag behind.
The prime minister said, the Pakistan Muslim League, under its leader Nawaz Sharif, has always pursued a politics of decency and of polite talk with the sole objective of resolving people’s problems.
He said following the July 28 Supreme Court verdict; the PML-N took a decision to appoint the next prime minister, without any problem. He said Nawaz Sharif was and is still leader of the people and lives in their hearts.
Prime Minister Abbasi said the decisions of politics need to be taken at polling stations and not at the courts, as such decisions were never long lasting.
Abbasi said a few years back the people were scared even to say their Friday prayers as there could be a bomb blast, but today the situation is different. The terrorists have been wiped out and the number of such attacks has drastically reduced. He said over 6500 security personnel have laid down their lives for protection of the people.
The prime minister said the PML-N government has ended the electricity and gas load shedding. He said the people of Sialkot would be able to reach Lahore through their new motorway in less than an hour.
He said even the Benazir Income Support Program has expanded to Rs 120 billion from Rs 50 billion. Prime Minister Abbasi said hundreds of development projects were underway from Gwadar to Khunjerab and today the people can see a marked difference in the lifestyle of cities of Punjab and those in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Sindh.
Inaugurating the international terminal at Sailkot Airport he termed the airport as successful Greenfield airport. He said unlike other unsuccessful greenfield airports in the world, the Sialkot International Airport was continuously being expanded with favorable outcomes.
The PM said the opening of international terminal at the airport would prove a significant milestone not only for the city, but for entire country.
He lauded the funding and patience of the business community of Sialkot that made this project a reality.
He mentioned that the businessmen of Faisalabad also showed keen interest in establishment of a similar airport in their locality, to which he assured them full support of the government.
He said the National Highway Authority was completing projects worth Rs 200 billion in the area. He said the PML-N was the only political party of the country which unprecedentedly launched and completed projects.
The PM said the government completed the power generation projects of 10,000 mega watts and added that reduction in rates of electricity and gas was also under consideration.
Foreign Minister Khawaja Muhammad Asif, the Federal Minister for Interior Ch Ahsan Iqbal and the Advisor for Aviation Sardar Mehtab Ahmed Abbasi welcomed the prime minister at the Sailkot International Airport.