PEW for preferring reforms over loans

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ISLAMABAD – The­ on Thursday asked the economic managers to focus on reforms as emphasis on acquiring loans was against the national interests.
“Excessive focus on loans has pushed the foreign loans to $73 billion,” it said.
“Getting more loans and avoiding meaningful reforms amounts to enslaving the whole nation and the coming generations,” said PEW President Dr Murtaza Mughal.
He said that despite announcement by the economic managers that foreign loans were no more required, a new loan of $800 million had been secured from the Asian Development Bank (ADB) for power sector reforms.
“Our policymakers have agreed to all the conditions put forward by the ADB which is disturbing,” he noted.
Mughal said that those who claimed to boost tax collection threefolds in three years should inform the nation that what initiatives had been taken in the last three years to reform the power sector.
“Masses must know why the existing taxpayers have been burdened while critical sectors are still being exempted,” he demanded.
He said that despite the fact that the government had saved $7 billion in oil import bill, the amount had not improved any indicator while the export sector had been damaged beyond repair due to blockade of refunds.
Mughal added that power and gas companies had been allowed to play havoc with the consumers.
“LNG is being purchased on inflated rates while there is no end to loan borrowing,” he bemoaned.
“The government continues to pay more attention to energy projects while ignoring health and education sectors, which is against the national interests,” he added.

In: Economy WatchAuthor: AAMIR JAVED