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Issue of consistent economic policies

Issue of consistent economic policies

According to Dr Miftah Ismail, Adviser to Prime Minister on Finance, the economy of Pakistan has the potential to record an annual growth rate of 10 percent provided the economic policies and reforms, introduced by the government in various sectors, continue in future. It is the dilemma of this nation that every new government rejects the plans and programmes launched by the previous government and adopts its own version of economic development policies. This not only foils the efforts of the previous government for the growth of economy, but also spoils the hard earned national wealth at the worst. There is no doubt in the notion that the country can achieve a higher growth target if programmes and policies are kept out of the realm of politics in the name of a larger national interest. However, this can only possible when the government institutions are independent and have the capacity to reject the political interference in their internal affairs. It is a good omen that the country is going to achieve 5.8 percent growth rate in its gross domestic product, against the government target of 6 percent during the year 2017-18. Though the growth is two points lower than it was projected, it is the highest in a decade.

Some world financial institutions, including the Asian Development Bank and the World Bank, have projected the GDP growth rate of 5 percent during the next fiscal year, but it can be twice if consistency in economic policies are ensure. The government has recently launched a suicide attack on the national currency and the nation will have to bear the consequences in the years to come. Who advised the government to take this drastic step is unclear, but whenever rupee is depreciated, it proved to be disastrous for the national economy. Instead of creating industrial surplus and boosting the agriculture sector, the government finds it comfortable to take makeshift steps and its solutions invite more troubles than benefits. The country is still facing energy crisis and tall claims by the political leaders that load shedding will end in 2018 proved not more than political stunts. The authorities claim that around 10,000 megawatt electricity has been added to the national grid during the last five years, but industrial and domestic consumers still face power outages. The current account deficit still haunts the nation and the government found a solution in devaluation of the rupee. If this is the situation, it will be a self-deception that the country can achieve the growth rate of 10 percent in the near future.