ADB to Provide $10 billion to Pakistan

ISLAMABAD, Nov 4 (APP): The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has planned to provide Pakistan about $10 billion in fresh assistance for various development projects and policy-based programs over the next five years under its new Country Partnership Strategy.

Vice President of the ADB, Shixin Chen reiterated ADB’s commitment to support the government’s reform agenda and to speed up the economic recovery process, said a press release issued here by Ministry of Economic Affairs on Wednesday. Federal Minister for Economic Affairs, Makhdum Khusro Bakhtyar held a virtual meeting with the vice president of ADB. Secretary Economic Affairs Division and Country Director, ADB Ms. Xiaohong Yang, also joined the meeting.

The meeting discussed key priorities of the Country Partnership Strategy (CPS 2021-2025) expected to be considered by ADB’s board of directors later this year. The Country Operations Business Plan (2021-2023) and ADB’s ongoing and support for Pakistan’s reforms programs were also discussed. Shixin Chen appreciated the government’s strategy to successfully combat the impact of COVID19 pandemic. The minister said that the proposed CPS framework was in line with the present government’s priorities.

He said that the CPS’s greater focus on improving economic management, building resilience and boosting competitiveness and private sector development would allow Pakistan to unleash the growth potential of Public-private Partnership sector and help a faster post COVID19 recovery. The minister, while appreciating the ADB continuous support to Pakistan, assured the vice president the government was committed to continue structural reforms in multiple areas of economy, governance and institutions including simplification of decision making for project approval and implementation and regular portfolio review of foreign aided projects.

A national coordination committee has also been constituted to ensure timely implementation and completion of projects and smooth disbursement of loan and grant components. The minister suggested new areas for ADB’s assistance including support for Public Private Partnership; strengthening food security infrastructure, supply chains, developing forecast mechanism for demand and supply and enhancing agro-productivity; and ope-rationalization of the EXIM Bank to effectively provide credit, guarantee and insurance products to boost the country’s trade volume.

The Vice President and the minister agreed to continue discussing ways to deepen ADB and Pakistan’s development partnership and ensure effectiveness of the ongoing portfolio.

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