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Government sets growth target of 4.8% for the next fiscal year.

The government on Friday set growth target of four point eight percent for the next fiscal year.

Addressing a press conference in Islamabad on Friday, Minister for Planning and Development Asad Umar said that the growth of 3.94 percent for the current fiscal year was driven by the productive sector. He said the government is ensuring quality and sustained growth.

The minister said that the main pillars of growth for the next fiscal year will be exports, industries, construction, IT, agriculture, poultry and remittances.

Regarding the cotton crop, Asad Umar said it is estimated to be 10.50 million bales for the next year due to provision of quality seeds and pesticides to the farmers. He said we are also forecasting boost in electricity consumption due to increased industrial activity.

“The exports which are expected to be 25.2 billion dollars during the current fiscal year are estimated to increase to 26.8 billion dollars in the next fiscal year,” he said and added there has been record growth in remittances this year which are expected to touch the level of 29.1 billion dollars by the close of this fiscal year. He said we are estimating that these will increase to 31.3 billion dollars next year.

The planning minister went on to say that the annual development plan, the PSDP, is being enhanced to 900 billion rupees for the next fiscal year from the current year s 650 billion rupees, adding that it will be our endeavor to fully utilize the PSDP amount which will also contribute to the growth figure. “A total of Rs 1 trillion of projects will be initiated next year through public private partnership,” he added.

Giving an overview of the development spendings for the next fiscal year, Asad Umar said these envisage road infrastructure projects including Hyderabad-Sukkur motorway.

He said: “The packages announced for Karachi, and select districts of Sindh and Balochistan and Gilgit-Baltistan will be financed from the PSDP. Similarly, funds will be provided from the development plan for the construction of dams.”

Asad Umar said Rs28 billion will be allocated for the health and thirty seven billion rupees for the Higher Education Commission, adding that Rs5 billion have also been allocated for the Skills Education program.

“The current account deficit for the next fiscal year has been estimated at 0.07 percent,” the minister added.

Earlier in his tweet, the minister said the Annual Plan Coordination Committee (APCC) has endorsed the GDP growth forecast, developed by the Planning Commission of Pakistan, of 4.8% for next year.

Asad Umar took to Twitter on Friday and said the development reflects the strength of growth momentum in the economy, while maintaining strong fundamentals. There is potential upside to this growth also, he added.

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