THE three points drop in Pakistan’s ranking in the Global Innovation Index from 104 in 2019 to 107 highlights the country’s eroding capability to emerge as a modern and flourishing economy globally. More than that, this drop speaks volumes about our staggering infrastructure, poor investment in human capital, education, technology, research and downtrodden financial markets.
As a result, it is no surprise that our ability to lure foreign investment has weakened terribly owing to deteriorating infrastructure and the worsening of the ease of getting credit.
It is poignant to note that in South Asia, Pakistan lags far behind Bangladesh, India, Nepal and Sri Lanka. According to a report ‘Invisible Barrier to Trade Pakistan in 2020: Business Perspectives’ released by the International Trade Centre, the reason for our depleting or poor export performance lies in self-created regulatory measures.
With such restrictions and barriers, Pakistan that has huge potentials to grow as a healthy and a productive economy, suffers terribly as the country’s exporters struggle immensely against the backdrop of domestic and foreign regulations.
Thus, to guarantee a long-term, sustainable goal, Pakistan needs to invest greatly in human development and technology through effective policy framework and implementation.
It is time the policymakers broadened their horizons and reduced our dependency on foreign lenders. The time is now ripe to stand on our own feet.
Published in Dawn, September 15th, 2020