ISLAMABAD - Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi said on Thursday that despite constraints, the foundation of sustainable development had been laid in the country.

He was addressing a convention of engineers organized by Pakistan Engineering Council (PEC) here.

Abbasi said that infrastructure projects that included power plants and highways and motorways have been completed over the last four years keeping in view the future requirements of the country.

The prime minister reminded that when the present government assumed office, industries and the compressed natural gas were closed due to nonsupply of power to them.

He said: “We have addressed the energy issues by importing gas and adding 10000 megawatts of power to the system in a matter of four years.”   

Abbasi said the present government has also completed projects which were started by the previous governments including Neelum Jhelum, Lowari Tunnel, Kachhi Canal and Nandipur Power Plant. He said Thar coal was also now being exploited which will play an important role in meeting energy requirements of the country.   

Highlighting the significance of engineering sector for the development, the prime minister expressed the commitment to make the PEC an effective and fully functional body.   

He said the PEC needed to further improve its curriculum and improve the standard of education in engineering to compete with the world.

The premier said Pakistani engineers did most of the work in making Pakistan a nuclear power and they were capable of performing in other sectors as well.

He pointed out that the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor also envisages road, energy, port and airport projects besides economic zones. He said, “We want the PEC to play a lead role in the projects by ensuring excellence”. The premier said world’s leading financial institutions were now appreciating the strides made by the country on the economic front.  

Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal, who also looks after the affairs of the ministry for planning, said that stability and continuity of policies were imperative for the development of the country.

He said the investments made in the energy and road infrastructure projects over the last few years will help promote the overall growth of the country.