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PM launches ‘Naya Pakistan Housing Project’

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Wednesday formally launched a low-cost housing scheme named ‘Naya Pakistan Housing Project’ as part of his party’s election manifesto. 

Speaking at the launch of the housing scheme, the prime minister defended his government’s decision to seek the IMF loan, saying it is being obtained for a short period to bridge yawning external financing gap.

The prime minister explained it was decided during a meeting either to approach the IMF or friendly countries for a loan to shore up fast depleting foreign currency reserves.

He said the government faced a short fall of 10 to 12 billion dollars.

Mr Khan said Pakistan’s debt climbed to Rs 30,000 billions from Rs 6,000 billions over the past ten years, adding that the previous PML-N government left behind a whopping deficit of 18 billion dollars for the incoming government to grapple with.

He said the present government’s reforms would begin to bear fruit after six months.

The prime minister resolved to pull the nation out of this abyss and added he would soon spell out a blueprint of how he would navigate the country out of troubling times.

He said 10 billion dollars are laundered every year. Had the previous governments eradicated this menace of money laundering, they wouldn’t have to take loans, he opined.

He said his government would make efforts to ensure that all remittances are transferred into the country through proper banking channels.

Five million houses would be provided to low-income people under the Naya Pakistan Housing Project.

The prime minister expressed confidence that the programme would not only help realise the dream of a shelter for the poor but also create employment opportunities. It will also attract local and foreign investment and stimulate about forty related industries.

He announced formation of a Naya Pakistan Housing Authority to serve as one window for all construction related formalities. The authority would be set up in three months and till then a Task Force would look after the housing project.

A National Financial Regulatory Body would be set up in two months to remove hurdles in financing of construction of houses.

A legal framework would also be prepared to ensure that there are no legal hurdles in the way of implementation of the housing project.

He said a Land Bank would be instituted to identify land with the federal government, housing ministry, provincial governments and local bodies.

The prime minister said in the first phase pilot projects would be launched in seven districts of the country. He said a registration process would be initiated in these districts from tomorrow with the cooperation of NADRA to gather data for housing needs of the people.

He said the federal government is launching first project for its employees and registration for the same would begin from tomorrow. Punjab Government would also launch a similar project.

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