LAHORE - Punjab Chief Minister Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif has said that Punjab government is implementing a comprehensive programme for speedy economic development of the province and Development Strategy 2018 is being formulated with consultation of experts for increasing growth rate in Punjab. He said that there is a need for institutional reforms for achieving the targets of economic development and the government is taking effective measures for capacity-building of government institutions.

 He said that rapid progress is being made towards setting up of e-government with the help of information technology. He said that lakhs of new job opportunities would be created during next four and a half years. He was talking to a delegation of World Bank, here on Friday. Development projects and measures for improvement of various sectors were discussed on the occasion. During the meeting, World Bank authorities and Punjab government agreed to promote cooperation in light manufacturing, urban developments, agri business, mining, IT and skill development sectors. The Chief Minister said that economic development is necessary for generation of new job opportunities and strengthening of foundations of economy. He said that government is taking solid measures for achieving the targets of economic development.

He said that Quaid-e-Azam Apparel Park is being set up near Motorway and investors associated with garments sector would be provided all necessary facilities under one roof in the apparel park. He said that a conducive atmosphere has been created in the province for investment while local and foreign investors are being fully encouraged. The Chief Minister said that there is vast scope of development in agriculture, livestock and dairy farming sectors and increase in the export of livestock and Halal products.

He said that Pakistan can earn huge foreign exchange through development of these sectors. He said that energy is essential for industrial process and the government is making rapid progress under a comprehensive planning for resolving energy shortage.

He said that reform programmes are being implemented for development of education, health and social sectors. The Chief Minister appreciated cooperation of World Bank in the progress of different sectors in Pakistan. Members of World Bank delegation while expressing their views said that Apparel Park is a splendid project and would result in generation of new job opportunities.

The delegation included Lead Specialist Vincent Palmade, Consultant James Crittle, Economist Dr. Chan, Senior Urban Specialist Fatima Shah and others.

Advisor Dr. Ijaz Nabi, Member Provincial Assembly Dr. Ayesha Ghaus Pasha, Chairman Planning & Development, Additional Chief Secretary Energy, Secretary Industry, Chairman Punjab Investment Board and concerned officers were also present.