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For a nation to progress it must have a clear idea of its destination. Without this it will be unable to prepare a roadmap and to implement the policies that would lead it there. A national vision is meant to provide clarity to our shared and aspirational destination. Pakistan was founded on such a vision. Nevertheless, over the years the clarity of that destination became blurred. We are committed to recreate, and also to re-build upon, the Pakistani Dream at the heart of the independence movement and founded on the vision that our people and leaders had so inspirationally constructed at the inception of our nationhood.

Pakistan today faces formidable social, economic, security and governance challenges. Many nations have faced similar challenges in history and successfully turned them into opportunities through sound economic planning, good governance and consistency in policy implementation. We believe that, once effectively addressed, our challenges likewise offer unprecedented opportunities for transformational progress. As we pass through an era of unprecedented change and complexity, it is imperative that we refresh our framework for national development to create a robust platform and to place Pakistan in the league of Upper Middle Income countries by 2025. However, our ultimate destination is to see Pakistan among the top ten economies of the world by 2047 – the centennial year of our independence.

Indeed, while Pakistan was founded on the Quaid’s vision of a prosperous country, governed with justice, equity, and responsibility—as spelled out in his address to the Constituent Assembly on August 11, 1947—this vision has yet to be realized in practice. Today, as the country is embarked on a stable democratic pathway, it is imperative that the core elements of the Quaid’s strategy are pursued consciously and actively. The Vision 2025 exercise was started, under the guidance of the Prime Minister, to restore the tradition of perspective planning in Pakistan.

Pakistan Vision 2025 has been framed to address the country’s specific aspirations and needs and challenges, while remaining pragmatically anchored within the global, regional and national contexts and its implications. As a result, the trends reviewed above are reflected in the approach; the Government of Pakistan intends to take going forward to transform the country into a high-income economy by 2047.

In 1947, Pakistan inherited a poor economy without adequate industrial infrastructure. But, after a decade, during the 60’s, Pakistan became one of the fastest growing economies in Asia and was tipped to become the next Japan.

The 1965 and 1971 wars and chequered political history derailed these promising developments. While the country has come a long way from 1947,  it has certainly not performed to potential or initial expectations.

Pakistan Vision 2025 aims to channelize and streamline the energies of Pakistan’s large youth population and realize their immense economic potential. Pakistan’s youth bulge can drive innovation and entrepreneurship.

The Government of Pakistan is committed to addressing this situation through major investment in youth. Under the leadership of Prime Minister Khan the government is providing young people skills training and access to finance so they can startup businesses. Youth entrepreneurships shall be further promoted. Establishment of youth hostels across the country will promote travel and national integration. Internships and job counseling will help youth transition to work life. Skills development institutes will be set up and madrasa education will be mainstreamed. Career counselling of students will help them transition into professional life. Vocational and technical training centers will improve youth employability. A network of sports grounds and centers for extra-curricular activities will be built to give youth a constructive outlet for their energies.

Pakistan Vision 2025 seeks to elevate Pakistan’s position from a lower middle income to an upper middle income country. The economy is targeted to grow by over 8% between 2020 and 2025 with single digit inflation. This will result in GDP per capita increasing from $1,300 to $4,200.

An export led growth strategy will be pursued to help achieve these ambitious targets. The Vision aims for an increase in exports from the current US $ 25 billion to US $ 150 billion by 2025. This will enable us to enhance expenditure on the social sector which is critical for reducing poverty. Consequently, poverty will be reduced by half. To accomplish these targets, we need a tax-to-GDP ratio of 16-18%, and an investment rate in the range of 22-25 % of GDP financed through domestic savings of 18-21% of GDP.

The international community is now showing increased confidence in Pakistan’s economy. A robust inflow of foreign savings is estimated at 3-4% of GDP in the medium-term to long-term which would enable us to finance additional investment of up to 2.7% of GDP until 2025. The projects in the proposed China-Pak Economic Corridor (CPEC) and energy sector will be financed through substantial inflow of foreign investment and disbursements. To release resources for the private sector, Pakistan will bring down the fiscal deficit below 4% of GDP in the long run and attain the domestic savings rate of 18-21% of GDP in order to finance investment from domestic resources.

Foreign private investment both from the Middle East and export oriented economies of East Asia including China, which now face the pressure of rising real wages, is a strong potential source of financing development, improving technology, upgrading labor skills, and finding export markets. Pakistan offers great prospects for foreign investment in energy including oil and gas exploration, infrastructure development, and water management. Pakistani Diaspora abroad is being be harnessed by providing incentives for investment. As part of the dividends from the Economic Corridor and regional connectivity, countrys’ trade linkages with neighboring countries will expand especially. Completion of key infrastructure and energy sector projects contributing to national economy and provide a stimulus to attain sustained and indigenous growth.

Successful countries have invariably built upon the dynamism of their regional contexts. Pakistan is situated at the nexus of the four most dynamic regions of the world—China, South Asia, the Middle East, and Central Asia. Vision 2025 aims at the establishment of an efficient and integrated system of communications and transport, in order to both benefit from and contribute to the regional dynamism. Key related targets are reduction in transportation costs, safety in mobility, effective connectivity between rural areas and markets/urban centres, inter-provincial high-speed connectivity, integrated road/rail networks between economic hubs (including air, sea and dry ports), high-capacity transportation corridors connecting major regional partners and exponential growth in exports.

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Disclaimer: PAKISTAN ON ROAD TO REVIVAL - Views expressed by writers in this section are their own and do not necessarily reflect point-of-view

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