Federal Minister for Finance Ishaq Dar on Sunday said the government has come a long way in achieving macroeconomic stability and after six years the growth has crossed the 4% mark. Dar met Chinese Vice Minister for Finance Yaobin Shi on the sidelines of the World Bank and International Monetary Fund Meetings in Washington DC.
The Finance Minister said the Ministry of Planning, Development and Reform in Pakistan is diligently working with the China's National Development and Reform Commission on the energy and Pakistan-China Economic Corridor projects.
The Vice Minister appreciated Pakistan's regional connectivity initiatives and expressed his support for pushing forward enhanced economic co-operation between the two countries besides the Economic Corridor and the Orange Line.
Referring to Sino-Pakistan all weather friendship, Yaobin said the Chinese President looks forward to his visit to Pakistan on mutually agreed dates.
Dar expressed his gratitude to the Chinese Vice Minister for his kind words and resolve towards Pakistan's economic recovery and apprised him of the successful holding of Diamer Basha Opportunities Conference in Washington DC with the support of USAID this week.
He also mentioned about the World Bank's pledge for Dasu Project and its significance both for irrigation and power generation purposes besides fighting off floods. Dar apprised the Vice Minister of the ongoing North Waziristan operation and the government's resolve to fight the menace of extremism.
Meanwhile, President International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), Kanayo Nwanze called on Dar in the US capital.
The Finance Minister said the government values IFAD's contribution in Pakistan's agriculture sector which has a major share in our GDP. Kanayo briefed that Pakistan is the fourth largest recipient of IFAD resources in the Asia and the Pacific region and that Pakistan is also a contributor to IFAD's resources.
Kayano explained that in comparison to other financial institutions, IFAD has a sense of ownership by virtue of working at the grassroots level. IFAD, he said, has created a new position in Pakistan, in order to diversify its programmes in particular focussing on youth employment and job creation in rural areas of Pakistan.
Dar commended the IFAD's initiation of study on Diaspora remittances and identification steps to encourage investment of remittances in the rural areas, especially in agriculture.
The Finance Minister flagged the need for additional allocation by the Fund, targeting rural areas of Pakistan. He stated that the issues of IFAD would be taken up with the provincial governments on his return to Pakistan. Kanayo informed the Finance Minister that they have recently mobilised their resources and by the end of 2015, significant financial resources would be available for prospective programmes in Pakistan.
The Finance Minister acknowledged the contribution of IFAD in the development of Pakistan's agriculture sector and offered to extend every possible assistance for smooth implementation of its projects.