LAHORE - Federal Commerce Minister Engineer Khurram Dastgir Khan said on Monday that Pakistan’s economy had gradually been stabilised, as public finance, budget deficit, peace and security, and availability of energy situation were now far better than in the past.

While addressing the 50th Golden Jubilee Annual Convention of Pakistan Society of Sugar Technologists (PSST) at a local hotel, he said that under leadership of Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif and rigorous efforts of Finance Minister Ishaq Dar, Pakistan would soon complete the IMF programme. With effective and viable policies of the PML-N government, Pakistan was reconnecting with the world, he asserted.

The federal commerce minister said that his ministry would recognize and acknowledge all new technologies and innovations by the PSST. He said that unfortunately, sugar industry was lagging behind in use of modern technology and techniques and sugar production was not matching with potential of this industry, and farmers were also facing fiscal problems to cultivate their lands. The minister asked the sugar mills owners to look into these issues, while taking aboard the PSST. He also offered public-private partnership in increasing the yield of major crops including sugarcane, cotton and rice.

After the convention, while talking to the media, the minister mentioned that government wherever found margins of relief, it had provided to the industry and the masses, citing that benefits of electricity fuel adjustment was for the first time passed on to the industry. While, the POL prices in Pakistan were at the lowest level when compared with other regional countries, he maintained. Now government was providing all facilities regarding value addition to the exporters, while export refinance was available at three percent and there was zero sales tax for five major exporting sectors, he added.

Khurram Dastgir was of the view that all the countries would have to play their respective role, and sit together for finding out a viable solution to eliminate terrorism. To another question, he said that they had never stopped Imran Khan’s protests and sit-in, asserting that protests and negative politics on a sub judice issue was not correct logically and one must let the court decide this issue, and we have complete confidence in the court of law and state institutions. He suggested that PTI must adopt parliamentary attitude and take up its reservations at elected assemblies.