Pakistan showing progress on war-on-terror and economy

DESPITE the ongoing conflict and persisting instability in neighbouring Afghanistan that has been, quite unfortunately, an impediment to regional peace and development, Pakistan has been achieving progressive and quite significant improvement in the country’s overall security landscape in recent years.
This has been accomplished largely due to successful counter-terrorism efforts of the Federal Government, in close coordination and cooperation of the provincial governments, under the unanimously and comprehensively formulated National Action Plan (NAP), backed by an extensive and highly effective counter-terrorism operation Zarb-e-Azb by the armed forces, and actions by other security and law enforcement agencies and intelligence-based operations across the country.
After successful completion of Zarb-e-Azb, another country-wide operation Raddul Fassad has since been launched and is in progress, as effectively and forcefully as the previous operations, for eliminating any residual or latent threats and desired objectives and results are being achieved accordingly. Due to the ongoing war in Afghanistan, Pakistan has and continues to face the most serious consequences from political to security, socio-economic and environmental, over the decades. From hosting millions of Afghan refugees to being a major victim of terrorism, militancy and extremism, the cumulative impact on Pakistan has been enormous, with adverse overall growth rate in all major sectors of the national economy.
Normal economic and trading activities were obviously greatly disrupted, resulting in higher costs of doing business including cost of insurance and significance delays in meeting and delivering the export orders from across the world. Resultantly, Pakistani products had gradually lost their market share to their competitors. Furthermore, , economic growth could not pick up at the planned and desired pace during the last decade or so.
Quite unfortunately, Pakistan continues to be target of terrorism, extremism and militancy including foreign-sponsored terrorism from its immediate neighborhood. A substantial portion of precious national resources, both men and material, had to be diverted to address the pressing security challenges and to repair and rehabilitate the damaged infrastructure during the last many years. In addition to heaving economic losses, Pakistan has been inflicted and continues to suffer untold human sufferings resulting from indiscriminate, brutal and ruthless attacks against its civilian population here, there and everywhere every now and then.
In this backdrop, success in counter-terrorism has played a critical role in creating conducive economic environment results of which have since started appearing in terms of growth across different segments of the national economy. As a result of these constant efforts, the total losses being incurred by the country due to incidents of terrorism, militancy and extremism are gradually declining. . The direct and indirect losses to the national economy are accordingly been gradually declining also.
According to facts and figures available from various official sources concerned, during 2015-16, the losses had declined by 29.8 per cent while during July 2016-March 2017, these had declined by as much as 40.2 per cent which quite clearly reflects the effectiveness of the federal government’s determined efforts to eliminate terrorism and extremism in all manifestations without any discrimination whatsoever to ensure the national security and solidarity and these menaces are eliminated from its sacred soil at the earliest.
In order to have more or less complete assessment of the incidents of terrorism, militancy and extremism on the national economy of Pakistan during the past several years, the estimates for FY 2016 have been updated and FY 2017 have been reduced in writings on the basis of relevant facts and figures from all concerned Federal Ministries and Divisions and Departments, Provincial Governments of Punjab, Sindh, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan, autonomous bodies.
During last less than two years i.e. 2015-16 and July 2016 to March 2017 alone, the country had suffered huge losses totaling 10,373.39 million dollars including exports 0.501 million dollars, compensation paid to the terrorist hits victims 21.88 million dollars, physical infrastructure damaged 928.75 million dollars, decline in foreign investment 1996.30 million dollars, privatization 262.23 million dollars, reduction in industrial production 29.38 million dollars, shortfall in tax collection 5920.00 million dollars, cost of uncertainty 14.82 million dollars, expenditure over run 1197.11 million dollars and others 1.90 million dollars.
During the last 16 years ever-since Pakistan was forced in the war on terror, the direct and indirect very huge costs incurred by the country and its people due to incidents of terrorism, militancy and extremism stand at 123.13 billion dollars equivalent to Rs 10,373 billion. Year-wise break-up includes (in billion US dollars): 2001-02 2.67, 2002-03-2.75,2003-04 2.93, 2004-05 3.41, 2005-06 4.67, 2007-08 6.94,2008-09 9.18, 2009-10 13.56,2010-11 23.77, 2011-12 11.98, 2012-13 9.97, 2013-14 7.70, 2014-15 9.24, 2015-16 6.49 and 2016-upto March 2017 3.88.
These bitter facts and figures, available from official sources concerned at the federal and provincial levels, have been presented here only keeping the people at large in the loop and not for indulging in any unpleasant discussion and debate with one or the other foreign countries around the globe, please.

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