Performance of Finance Ministry not satisfactory: Omar Ayub

Staff Reporter

ISLAMABAD: Despite several development projects launched by the government the performance of finance ministry is not as much satisfactory so far as it should be. This was said by Chairman Standing Committee on Finance, Revenue, Economic affairs, Statistics and Privatization Omar Ayub Khan here on Tuesday. Responding to his remarks, Additional Secretary Ministry of Finance and Revenue Azra Mujtab said that the government has attained 4.14 percent growth in outgoing fiscal year which is the highest level achieved since 2008-09. GDP growth target for current FY 2015-16 has been set at 5.1 percent. Furthermore while briefing the committee on economic progress and performance of the government in last financial year and 2014-15 till date Azra Mujtaba said that we have achieved many successes during this time period including growth of 4.14 percent against 3.1 percent in 2012-13 with contribution from agriculture, industry and services by 2.12 percent, 5.84 percent and 4.29 percent respectively. Inflation has been kept firmly in single digit during FY 14 at 8.6 percent and during July-December FY 15 inflation has declined to 6.1 percent from 8.9 in the same period of FY 14. She further said that government has developed a holistic National Power Policy which provides a roadmap to overcome the present energy crisis and fully meet the future needs of power in country. She said that the foreign exchange reserves which were 7.58billion dollar in February 2014 have increased to 14.10 billion dollar in June 2014. ‘Pakistani rupee (PKR) is also appreciated and exchange rate is moving towards the stability and market sentiments are giving positive signal for the economy’ she added. Stock exchange index witness its highest level as currently is trading about 34,000. In terms of market capitalization it has improved from 51.3 billion dollar to 77.3 billion dollar within the period of 14 months from May 2013 to July 2014 thus posted a growth of 50.6 percent. The members of committee showed great concern and reservations on the absence of Minister and Secretary Finance as both are out of county for a business meeting with IMF. Syed Naveed Qamar said that economy is the key issue of any country and if the government is not serious in solving economic issues and discussing financial matters in this committee then there is no need to hold meeting of this committee. On that, members seconded the statement of Naveed Qamar and chairman committee Omar Ayub Khan assured them that both the officials will be present in next meeting. While discussing the economic issues of Pakistan, Abdur Rashid Godil said that government has not shown any seriousness in economic matters on that chairman committee said that the current progress of finance ministry is not satisfactory so far. The committee has issued directives to Minister and Secretary on behalf of all members to ensure his attendance in next meeting as many of the agenda items have not been taken just because of the absence of the authority person of the Ministry of Finance and Revenue.

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