Rs480 billion circular debt cleared: Ishaq Dar

Islamabad, July 22 2013 (PPI-OT): A Malaysian delegation led by Dr. Mohammad Emir Amvani Abdullah, CEO Felda Global Centures Holdings Berhad, called on Finance Minister, Senator Mohammad Ishaq Dar here Monday morning.

During the meeting they held in depth discussions to explore ways and means to further expand trade and economic relations between the two countries. “The existing volume of trade between the two countries is not commensurate to the close brotherly relations existing between the two countries”, said the Finance Minister.

Assuring the Malaysian delegation of all possible cooperation and facilitation, Senator, Ishaq Dar said that you will find it forthcoming “whenever and wherever it is required”.

Dr. Mohammad Emir said there were tremendous business opportunities and Malaysia was willing to make investments in Pakistan and looking particularly at Pakistan as a spring board for re-export to Central Asia and Africa.

Senator Ishaq Dar recalling his meetings with the former Prime Minister Dr. Mahateer Mohammad praised him for his vision for Ummah and inspiring leadership.

Senator Ishaq Dar informed the Malaysian delegation that the Prime Minister Mian Mohammad Nawaz Sharif would soon unfold an Energy Policy which envisages additional power generation at affordable prices. The policy, he said, would address the present skewed energy mix which was at the core of the present energy crisis facing the country. “We plan to double the power generation in the country in the next five years”, said the Finance Minister.

Senator Ishaq Dar said that the circular debt which had been adversely affecting energy production has been virtually settled. We have cleared Rs.480 billion to power producing entities and the balance of Rs.23 billion represents the claims pending settlement.

A small amount would be however, withheld pending clearance. This measure, he said, had not only resulted in addition of 1700MW in the national grid but also buoyed foreign investors who are now looking forward to make investments in the energy sector in Pakistan.

Senator Ishaq Dar said that the conclusion of a programme with IMF has sent very positive signals to the financial world which has welcomed the measures taken by the government of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif for stabilizing the economy and creating an investor-friendly climate. This IMF programme, the Minister said, would provide comfort to the investors and enhance their confidence in the economy of Pakistan.

Senator Ishaq Dar regretted that a handful of speculators were trying to play with Pakistani currency for small personal gain and jeopardizing country’s interests.

The Malaysian delegation included Dr. Mohammad Emir Amwani Abdullah, CEO, Dato Khairil Anuar Hj Azikz, Group Chief Operating Officer and Azman Bin Ahmed, Vice President/CEO Felda Johore Bulkers wile the Finance Minister was assisted by the senior officials of the Finance Ministry.

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