ISLAMABAD: The latest figures shown in the Economic Survey testified PTI’s claims that Pakistan was on the trajectory of progress, former prime minister Imran Khan said on Thursday.
Part of the reason, according to Mr Khan, was his government’s strategy to implement “smart lockdowns” during the Covid-19 pandemic despite pressure to lock down the whole country. The strategy helped Pakistan gain worldwide recognition and outshine other regional countries as far as employment was concerned, he said.
While commenting on the Economic Survey in a televised address on Thursday, he said that PTI government had put the country on path of economic progress and prosperity during the last two years.
“Economic Survey report endorsed that Pakistan’s GDP was 5.74pc during the third year of PTI’s government and the [Federal Board of Revenue] collected a record tax of Rs6,100 billion, while the exports that were frozen when PTI came to power touched the $32bn level,” he said.
Mr Khan revealed that the foreign remittances witnessed a record increase due to trust in the PTI government by overseas Pakistanis.
Recalling the achievement of his government in the agriculture field, he said farm production grew 4.4pc while the farmers were paid on time for the first time.
Responding to debt rhetoric of opponents, he said PML-N had left the GDP-to-debt ratio at 64pc and PTI maintained it despite paying the interest double than it was during the PML-N government.
Lashing out at the “imported government”, Mr Khan said there was record inflation since the incumbent government came to power.
The ousted premier said his Govt did not succumb to the pressure of International Monetary Fund (IMF) and kept the interest of people above everything and provided them maximum relief. He disclosed that the PTI government was also asked by the IMF to jack up fuel and electricity prices, but he refused the harsh conditions because it was tantamount to overburdening the masses.
He pointed out that during the whole PTI tenure, petrol was jacked up by mere Rs55 per litre, but the ‘imported government’ raised its price by Rs60 in just 15 days.
“Pakistan is unable to get foreign loans due to the incompetence of the government,” he said.
The PTI chairman said he would soon give the call for the biggest protest against the injustice being done to Pakistan.
Meanwhile, former PTI minister Hammad Azhar said the Economic Survey depicted a success story of their government.
“PTI govt achieved almost all financial targets during the last one year. It is unfortunate that the govt was changed through a conspiracy. Country has been handed over to a team of jokers, which has destroyed everything,” he said.
Former finance minister Shaukat Tarin, speaking at a press conference, said the agreement with IMF would not serve the interest of the public, as the incumbent government surrendered to the global financial body and accepted its harsh conditions.
He claimed that the PTI-led government took a bold step and rejected the IMF’s conditions of raising prices of electricity and petroleum products and plan was to cover the capital by increasing the tax base.
Published in Dawn, June 10th, 2022
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