ISLAMABAD/FRANKFURT - Finance Minister Ishaq Dar has been selected as a Vice Chairman of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) for a period of two years 2016-17.

Parliamentarians and business community have felicitated the minister on his selection as vice chairman. Finance Ministers of Pakistan and Italy have been selected for the posts of two vice chairmen in ADB.

Meanwhile, Finance Minister Ishaq Dar met JICA delegation, led by JICA Vice President Yasushi Kanzaki, here on Thursday on the sidelines of the ADB’s Annual Board of Governors meeting. The finance minister praised the Government of Japan / JICA for their continued support for the economic development of Pakistan.

He also expressed gratitude to Japan for its financial assistance worth $1.4 billion.

Dar also thanked the Japanese delegation for Japan’s contribution of $50 million during the fiscal year 2014-15, and further commitment of $43 million (approx) for the Energy Sector Reforms Programme (II) during 2015-16. Informing the delegation that Karachi Circular Railway was a project of national importance, the minister urged Kanzaki to give firm commitment for funding the project.

He expressed his desire for enhancing the level of economic cooperation between the two countries. The JICA delegation reciprocated the intention of enhancing the level of bilateral cooperation.

Matters relating to the ongoing projects, being funded by JICA in Pakistan, also came under discussion. It was noted that the projects were making satisfactory progress.

Secretary EAD Tariq Bajwa and other members of Pakistan’s delegation also attended the meeting.

Meanwhile, Finance Minister Ishaq Dar has said that the prospects for economic growth in Asia are very strong and investments in the infrastructure development across the region will act as a catalyst, bringing it at par with the developed regions of the world in the long run.

Speaking as a panelist in a high level debate on Asia’s Economic Outlook, Dar gave comprehensive replies to the questions relating to the future of Asia’s economy in the next five years; regions economic transformation and its effects on 4.4 billion population, and the way forward to cope with potential external and domestic risks in order to sustain growth momentum.

Dar listed the steps taken by the government to revive the economy within less than three years after the assumption of office.

Finance Ministers of Pakistan and India were asked questions by the CNBC anchor Karen regarding the bilateral relations.

Besides Dar, other panelists included Indian Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, Indonesian Finance Minister Bambang Brodjonegoro, President Nakao of ADB and  Agnes Vargas, Regional Head, Commerzbank Germany.

The debate was telecast live to the CNBC viewers around the world.

When Dar was asked about his views on Brexit i.e, Britain’s referendum on whether to exit from the European Union or stay, and its likely impact on its economy, he responded it was up to the people of Britain to decide their future relationship with Europe.

He was of the view that Britain’s exit would not have any adverse impact on its economy since it had its own currency.