The government has implemented an ambitious reform programme in Pakistan, Prime Minister Imran Khan said while addressing the World Government Summit on Sunday.
‘Reform programmes are painful but essential,” he remarked. “Reforms are painful. People suffer a lot. Think of it as a surgical procedure being performed on a person. The patient suffers for a while but then he recovers.” The worst thing for a society is to postpone reforms, he added.
PM Khan said that the government wants to improve Pakistan’s economic policies. “We want to cut down our fiscal deficit, improve our exports and cut down imports. The bills have gone up, obviously,” he remarked.
The premier arrived in Dubai on Sunday afternoon to attend the seventh edition of the world summit in Dubai.
He said that the Abu Dhabi crown prince advised him to allow businesses to make money. “If businesses make money, only then more people will invest in a country. We are working on ease of business. We are changing our tax laws,” he said.
Imran Khan said that he has learned one main lesson from sports: “You only lose when you give up.”
He said that good governance is necessary for the development of any country. “Accountability and meritocracy are the two main aspects of good governance,” he said. A government is likely to succeed more if it has a good accountability process and a good system of helping people get to the top, PM Khan explained.
“Pakistan has the greatest talent in sports, but we do not have the system of bringing that talent up,” he said. “We were on top in the 1960s because of our civil services,” the PM said. “Gradually, as our system of merit went down, so did the country.”
The premier said that he wants Pakistan to follow the model of riyasat-e-Madina is because it “laid down the foundations of the world’s greatest civilisation.” It was based on the principles of justice and humanity. It was the first time a welfare state was formed. The state took care of the poor people, he remarked.
The minorities were treated with utmost respect. There was no forcible conversion, people were encouraged to respect different places of worship and there was a charter of humanity, the PM said.
The Holy Prophet (PBUH) made seeking knowledge a sacred duty, he remarked.
Meetings with IMF chief, Abu Dhabi crown prince
Imran Khan held a meeting with IMF President Christine Lagarde in Dubai at the sidelines of the World Government Summit. Pakistan is in talks with the IMF for a loan package to shore up its dollar reserves so it can repay foreign debt and continue paying for essential imports such as oil, machinery and raw material that keep the economy going.
Prime Minister @ImranKhanPTI meets Ms. Christine Lagarde, Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on the sidelines of the World Government Summit in Dubai.#WorldGovSummit pic.twitter.com/Ojb3TcMJce
— PTI (@PTIofficial) February 10, 2019
He even met with Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan before the summit.