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PM discusses proposals for economy uplift with business leaders

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan Wednesday met his council of business leaders and discussed with them proposals for strengthening the country’s economy, development of industrial, agriculture and IT sectors and ways to boost exports.

Apart from Finance Minister Asad Umar, Advisor to the prime minister on Commerce Abdul Razzak Dawood, Chairman BOI, Governor SBP senior officials the council members included Muhammad Ali Tabba, Bashir Ali Muhammad, Saqib Shirazi, Ms. Samina Rizwan, Babar Badat, Khawar Anwer Khawja and other leading businessmen.

A statement from the PM Office said the business leaders identified the issues confronting the government and presented proposals to strengthen the national economy.

Soon after becoming the premier, Khan on Aug 20 pledged to uplift the national economy, without begging to develop a great and dignified nation.

The PM, in his address, categorically stated that loans were not a solution to run a country. It was disgraceful for a nation as well as the leader to beg money from other countries as the lenders compromised the sovereignty of the country.

Giving details of foreign loans, the prime minister said Pakistan today owed a huge debt of Rs 28,000 billion as against Rs 6,000 billion ten years back. The country’s debt reached from Rs 6,000 billion in 2008 to Rs 13,000 billion and Rs 28,000 billion, respectively, in 2013 and 2018.

He vowed to tell the nation why this huge amount of loans was taken during the last ten years and how it was spent. “Today, we are in a situation, when we have to borrow even for debt-servicing.”

The prime minister said the PPP during its first year of government took loans worth $ 2 billion. Now the country required $ 2 billion a month for debt-servicing as the foreign debt had reached US $ 95 billion in 2018 from US $ 60 billion in 2013, causing depreciation of rupee against dollar.

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