ISLAMABAD: A Pakistan delegation on Saturday met with World Bank Vice President for South Asia Region Annette Dixon in Washington DC and discussed economic situation and potential investment opportunities in Pakistan.
The Pakistan delegation including Finance Secretary Shahid Mahmood, Governor State Bank of Pakistan Tariq Bajwa and Secretary Economic Affairs Division Arif Ahmed Khan met separately with World Bank’s Annette Dixon, Executive Vice President and Chief Executive Officer of the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA) Keiko Honda and Vice President International Finance Corporation (IFC) Dimitris Tsitsiragos.
They also held meetings with representatives of various private banks and institutional investors.
In their meetings, they highlighted the current economic situation of Pakistan as well as potential investment opportunities in Pakistan.
They further highlighted that growth rate achieved in last financial year by Pakistan was the highest in a decade and that the ongoing China Pakistan Economic Project, improved security situation and growth in private sector credit off take, especially fixed investments, will help Pakistan in maintaining this growth trajectory in the coming years.
Referring to the main challenge facing the economy, they mentioned that the current account deficit was partly driven by higher machinery imports, which in coming years should add to the growth momentum of the economy through increased economic activity in the real sector. However, the external account situation is being closely monitored and steps are being taken to address it.
In their meeting with Ms. Annette Dixon, the Pakistan delegation referred to debt estimates published in the recent World Bank report on South Asia.
The World Bank acknowledged that the figures quoted in certain sections of media were grossly exaggerated and an undue misperception had been created.
The delegation also impressed upon the World Bank to play its role under the Indus Water Treaty to resolve outstanding dispute between India and Pakistan on the construction of Kishenganga and Ratle hydropower projects.
With the IFC team, detailed discussions were held to speed up the process for setting up the proposed Pakistan Infrastructure Bank. The IFC team stated that process to finalize the business plan for PIB and initiating other legal requirements would be started soon.
In their MIGA meeting, the delegation welcomed the planned visit of MIGA representatives to Pakistan to carry out due diligence in auto mobile sector and urged them to expand their operations in Pakistan. On their part, MIGA stated that they planned to showcase Pakistan’s investment potential during Ms Honda’s planned visit to South Korea.
Earlier, the delegation also attended International Monitoring Fund/World Bank Annual Meetings’ Plenary Session in Washington DC on Friday.
The plenary session was addressed by president World Bank and managing director IMF.