Minister for Finance, Revenue, Economic Affairs, Statistics and Privatisation, Mohammad Ishaq Dar Saturday said his main principles would be transparency in the working, adherence to law and rules, austerity, out-of-the-box thinking, good governance and zero tolerance for corruption.

Mohammad Ishaq Dar, in a meeting with the senior officials of the Finance Division on Friday, said that he is a professional and would promote a professional culture in the Ministry. He further stated that even though the country is facing serious challenges but he was confident that with the help and guidance of Almighty Allah we will steer the country out of these difficulties.

He said that the nation was looking for the forthcoming budget with a great deal of hope. The Government of PM Mian Nawaz Sharif has an economic vision that was outlined in party’s manifesto and it will be unfolded in the budget. He said the budget will give a clear direction to the economy and will address all major economic challenges the nation is confronted with. Keeping in view the commitment to transparency, he emphasized, that full disclosure of the state of the economy will be made and nothing will be hidden from the public.

He noted that the biggest concern of Pakistan was not so much expenditures, as these were reasonable compared to international standards. Rather it is the low tax-to-GDP ratio, around 9% at present, which is the real bane of the economy. Unfortunately, much of it is due to leakages in the system that are largely a result of corruption and tax evasion which will be fought vigorously. He stated that the officials who were known for their integrity and professional commitment would be respected. Later, Finance Minister met the Secretaries of EAD, Statistics, Revenue and Privatization.