Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi has correctly expressed his apprehensions over political turmoil in the country which he said could cost the nation of foreign investment. However, he said that Pakistan still has the potential to achieve six month growth to its gross domestic product during the current fiscal year until June. The government has already floated international bonds of $2.5 billion and is receiving loans from the financial institutions to bolster the depleting foreign exchange reserves. No doubt the country is passing through a transitional period as corruption cases have been filed against members of the ruling elite and others who allegedly pilfered billions of rupees from the national wealth. The state of economy is not in a good shape despite the fact that all the economic variables are in its favour. The political chaos and the protests by religious groups can definitely keep the foreign investors at bay as no one wants to invest his money in an unstable environment. However, the prime minister should also understand that economic policies have more leverage than the political policies. North Korea provoked its industrial growth during the days of political uncertainty and China is another example of industrial revolution which it achieved in a dictatorial regime.
The extra-prolong religious protest in Rawalpindi was the failure of administration and not the failure of the state. The soft-image of the country which was built after great efforts has been shattered as the situation was mishandled by the local administration. However, it is the responsibility of the prime minister to monitor the financial affairs in the absence of the finance minister which he can do by appointing a financial adviser to brief him on the day to day situation. He cannot handle all the matters all alone as the mandate of the present government will continue till June next year.
The unfortunate part of the economy is that, it is almost directionless and this forces the local investors to find foreign destinations for the investment of their money. One fails to understand why business-friendly policies are not adopted in Pakistan. There must be investigations who hinders the implementation of pro-business policies and who opposes the tax relief for the investors.
Pakistan is a country of over 200 million people and where there are people there is economy. The country offers vast business and investment policies and is rich in natural resources. The only need is to devise conducive environment to promote business and investment in the country.