Prime Minister Imran Khan pictured during an informal interaction with German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Thursday.—PPI
Prime Minister Imran Khan pictured during an informal interaction with German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Thursday.—PPI

DAVOS: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Thursday said his vision for a strong Pakistan was revival of industries for creation of wealth, which would be spent on the uplift of underprivileged segments in a welfare-oriented society.

The prime minister on his last day in the Swiss resort of Davos, which he visited to attend the annual meeting of World Economic Forum, remained busy speaking at various occasions and holding meetings with different dignitaries.

Mr Khan had an informal meeting with German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

During the meeting, Ms Merkel invited PM Khan to visit Germany.

Addressing `Breakfast at Davos’, an event jointly organised by Pathfinder Group and Martin Dow Group, the premier shared his vision about Pakis­tan’s progress and related subjects including strategic vision, fighting corruption, poverty all­e­viation and geopolitical balance.

He said Pakistan’s founding and ideological fathers wanted the country to be a humane and just society and vowed to set the direction of society on similar trajectory.

Merkel invites Imran to visit Germany

“Pakistan is about hope and I believe that with its immense potential and determination, the nation will thrive,” he added.

Stressing the importance of good governance, he said institutions could get deteriorated quickly, but their revival always took a lot of time and efforts.

He mentioned corrupt system as the biggest challenge in slow implementation of reforms of institutions.

“It is like everyone wants to remove the tumor, but does not want to have the pain of surgery,” he said, adding the moment nation realised the importance of good governance, the country would make progress.

The PM said foreign debt by previous governments resulted in putting undue pressure on common man and said he would soon take up the matter with stakeholders on how to reduce burden on electricity consumers.

He highlighted his government’s export-oriented app­roach to attain economic stability and mentioned reduction in current fiscal deficit by 75 per cent which ultimately reflected in 200pc increase in foreign investment.

“I am confident that Pakistan is on the right track,” he said, adding that staying steadfast during challenges was important to achieve goals.

“This is the cheapest official visit to Davos unlike those by former rulers,” he said.

He recalled that his trip to UN General Assembly last November was the least costly with $160,000 as compared to then President Asif Zardari’s 1.4 million expenditure, then Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s $1.3m and even $800,000 of PM Shahid Khaqan Abbasi.

Top officials of some international firms also called on the prime minister.

Mr Khan, while assuring full cooperation to investors in his meeting with Coca-Cola company’s CEO James Quincey, stressed on environment-friendly green technology in line with the government’s Clean & Green Pakistan.

The prime minister appreciated the long association and Mr Quincey acknowledged the improvement of business environment in Pakistan and expressed the interest to expand the company’s investment in the country.

Renowned international mobile operating company GSMA’s director general Mats Granyrd also met Prime Minister Khan on Thursday.

The meeting discussed cooperation in realising the vision of Digital Pakistan — the government’s programme to accelerate growth of information technology sector.

The GSMA represents the interests of mobile operators worldwide, uniting over 750 operators with 400 companies in mobile ecosystem including handset and device makers, software companies, equipment providers and internet companies.

Published in Dawn, January 24th, 2020