ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Sunday said that the Roshan Digital Account had achieved another milestone as the inflows of deposits had crossed $1.5 billion mark on Friday, with investment in Naya Pakistan certificates surpassing $1bn.

On his Twitter account, the prime minister posted an index of the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) showing cumulative inflows of deposits in the Roshan Digital Account, terming it good news.

He said that the accounts and the deposits had set new records since $1bn inflow was recorded two months ago.

Roshan Digital Account is a banking facility available to Pakistani expatriates, which allows them to have access to banking services within the country without having to visit a consulate, embassy or a physical bank branch.

PM hosts dinner

Prime Minister Khan is hosting a dinner reception for lawmakers of political parties in the ruling coalition on Monday (today) as the government is likely to get the federal budget 2021-22 passed by the National Assembly on Tuesday.

The prime minister has invited heads and members of all coalition parties to the reception apparently to get their support in the passage of the budget.

Mohammad Aslam Bhootani, an independent MNA, told Dawn that he had received the invitation from the Prime Minister Office and would definitely attend the dinner.

Imran to host dinner for ruling coalition lawmakers today

He said that the government needed support from all its partners to get the Finance Bill-2021-22 passed by the National Assembly despite the opposition’s resistance.

“Although I am an independent MNA but I support the government as it has taken a number of steps that will benefit the people of Balochistan,” Mr Bhootani said. For example, he said, the prime minister had announced that a cadet college would be established in Gwadar and funds for it had been allocated in the budget. Similarly, Rs330bn had been earmarked for uplift of old Gwadar city and a dam would be constructed in Jiwani to overcome water scarcity in the area, he added.

Asked whether the dinner was being given to seek support of allied parties for passing the budget, federal Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry said: “It is an old tradition that prime minister hosts reception a day before passage of the budget.”

Tree plantation

In another tweet, Mr Khan expressed dissatisfaction that Pakistan was at the bottom of the list of countries in terms of ratio of trees per person.

He, therefore, urged the people, especially the youth, to actively take part in the country’s biggest tree plantation campaign, referring to the coming monsoon tree plantation drive in the country under the government’s ambitious Ten Billion Tree Tsunami project and Green and Clean Pakistan initiative.

The prime minister stressed that the countrymen should accelerate their efforts to plant maximum saplings during the campaign.

“I want all Pakistanis, esp [especially] our youth, to gear up for the biggest tree planting campaign in our history. We have a lot of catching up to do,” he said in his tweet along with a graph showing numbers of trees per person in different countries of the world.

“And we will be gearing up this monsoon season for our plantation drive – the biggest in Pakistan’s history,” he said in a related tweet.

According to the graph, the world has 422 trees for every person but in Pakistan, this ratio stands at around five trees per person.

A study in the journal Nature has reported existence of about 3.04 trillion trees on earth. According to another data compiled by different international research bodies, about 50 per cent of these trees in the world are in the five biggest countries, and two-thirds in just 10 countries, leaving only 1,990bn trees for the rest of the world.

‘Tree wealth’, an ecological term, can also be measured in terms of the number of trees per person.

As per the world population and tree resources, there are 422 trees for every individual. The countries with the highest ratio include Canada with 10,163 trees per person, Russia with 4,461 trees per person, Australia 3,266, Greenland 4,964 and the Central African Republic with 5,152 trees per person. As many as 53.1 million hectares of Bolivia account for 5,465 trees per person, while Gabon’s ‘dry’ forests spanning over 77pc area of the country have 8,131 trees per person. The United States has 699 trees per person.

Published in Dawn, June 28th, 2021

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