Fall in corruption index

Courtesy:- Malik M Ashraf

The Transparency International in its fourth consecutive annual report has indicated fall in corruption index in Pakistan. Since 2013 corruption has declined by 19 points with biggest nosedive of nine points during 2016. According to the report Pakistan has achieved the distinction of being number two state in South Asia in regards to tackling corruption. That indeed is matter of great pride for the country as well as the incumbent government, which has made credible efforts to eliminate avenues of corruption in the higher echelons of the government and different tiers of the government machinery.

The reality is that unlike the previous government, no mega corruption scandal has been reported or unearthed by the excessively vigilant media and anti-corruption entities. The corroboration of decline in corruption by a prestigious agency like Transparency International is also a shut up call for those who are relentlessly engaged in soiling the reputation of the government by hurling unsubstantiated allegations of corruption against it.
The performance and achievement of the government in regards to the revival of the economy has also been repeatedly authenticated by almost all the international lending and rating agencies and they all have predicted a higher rate of GDP in the coming years. Reportedly Pakistan’s Stock Exchange Index continues to maintain its upward trajectory and has achieved the highest ever benchmark of 50,000 in regards to KSE-100 index. At the recently concluded moot of the World Economic Forum, the President of the forum and world leaders not only acknowledged the success story of the economic policies of the government but predicted a leading role for Pakistan in promoting regional connectivity. According to media reports published on Jan 24, internationally renowned Fund Manager Emi Corporation has declared Pakistan among six best countries most suitable for investment.
There could not have been a better exposition of the achievements of the government in the domain of tackling corruption and reviving the economy than the endorsement given to them by the respective international forums. The facts speak for themselves. The fact is that the present government through prudent management of the economy and structural reforms has been able to lift the profile of the economy and nudge a process of sustained economic growth. Budget deficit which is considered to be mother of all economic infirmities has been brought down from 8.8% of GDP in 2013 to 4.2 % by year 2016. GDP growth rate which was less than 3% stands at 4.71 %, highest rate in the last eight years. Inflation has been kept at a single digit. They are all verifiable facts. WB has predicted GDP growth rate of 5.1 during 2016-17.
Energy crisis that badly affected industry and agriculture sectors as well as the domestic consumers has gradually been checked and the government has been able to add 3000 MW to the national grid during the last three years, reducing power cuts. With the import of LNG the gas supply to the industrial units has considerably improved. By the end of 2018, the projects initiated under CPEC will add another 10640 MW electricity to the national grid. It is perhaps pertinent to point out that by 2030, another addition of 30000 MW is envisaged. That surely promises a prosperous future for the country. It is expected that the completion of CPEC infrastructure and energy project by 2030, will add nearly 3% to GDP growth rate of country. The CPEC is a fortune-changing mega-project for Pakistan and all the participating countries. Pakistan in its capacity as economic hub for the region would be the biggest beneficiary. It is a national project and the government has made sure that it is not only nationally owned but also leads to prosperity of all the federating units. In this regard it has made relentless efforts to remove the misgivings of the federating units and those who have been trying to belittle the importance of CPEC.
The government ensured the participation of the Chief Ministers of KP, Sindh, Gilgit-Baltistan and Balochistan in the sixth meeting of the Joint Coordination Committee recently held in Beijing in which all the provinces have been given additional development projects for their provincial capitals in addition to the already promised ventures under CPEC. The government can also rightly boast about checking terrorism in its tracks and improving situation in Karachi and Balochistan. The foregoing verifiable facts prove beyond an iota of doubt that the performance of the govt in regards to inherited challenges has been quite satisfactory.

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