ISLAMABAD - Pakistan Institute of Development Economics (PIDE) in collaboration with World Bank organised a development dialogue seminar on “Poverty and Inequality” here on Wednesday.The development dialogue series is a part of ongoing efforts to bring leading experts to Pakistan to exchange global knowledge and experiences on key policy and development challenges in Pakistan. On the occasion, Francois Bourguignon, director at Paris School of Economics and a global expert on the micro-determinants of poverty, inequality and their relation to labor market issues, gave a detailed presentation and said that absolute poverty reduction has to be the main goal of development.“Global experience shows that while globalization and growth can lead to inequality, it need not necessarily be so. Domestic policies can reduce inequality without impairing growth,” he said.He added that the inequality slows down poverty reduction for given growth and is bad for growth beyond some level.He said that preventing the inequality to grow beyond some limit is an important objective and we can achieve it with speeding up growth through correcting inequality, reducing market distortions, redistribution through the accumulation of productive assets such as education, health care, and access to credit, infrastructure etc, among the poor rather than the redistribution of current income.While talking about Pakistan’s experience Francois Bourguignon said that in Pakistan the growth is relatively slow whereas inequality is stable. The missing growth engine could be found in crisis-prone macro-management, limited openness, governance deficit and limited infrastructure, but the removal of any of these obstacles to growth except openness would really increase inequality.Dr Ishrat Hussain said that this is not a source of satisfaction that we are stable in inequality because at the same time growth is not taking place in Pakistan.Rachid Benmessaoud, World Bank country director for Pakistan, research economists and a large number of academia participated in the seminar.