The Frontier Post
Published Date: Mar 5, 2013
Connectivity can secure a prosperous future
at a seminar on Monday said enhanced physical, economic and social connectivity
can secure a prosperous future for South Asia region.
They said, South Asia is one of the least connected regions in the world and
called for improved connectivity for smooth flow of goods, services, people,
technologies, knowledge, capital, culture and ideas throughout the region.
They also demanded policy makers in Pakistan to reform laws, develop new
business models and involve private sectors for investments to promote
connectivity and development.
were discussing at a seminar on “Regional Connectivity and Economic Growth”
organized SDPI here on Monday. Speaking at the occasion, Dr Vaqar Ahmed, Deputy
Executive Director, SDPI said that connectivity discourse should not be limited
to mere physical infrastructure but social and people to people connectivity
must also be considered for regional integration.
of communications network and services in Pakistan, Dr Vaqar argued that state
is intervening as major player that is competing with private sector through
monopoly corporations such as NLC, PIA, and Railway.
to Pakistan’s new framework for economic growth, Dr. Vaqar said that government
should support public private partnership and promote privatization. He said,
Projects at inception and PC1 phase must first be offered to private sector. He
also cited ‘Sialkot Dry Port Trust’ a successful model and suggested to
replicate it further. Underlining the need to use ICT infrastructure to
decrease costs and increase efficiency, Dr Vaqar said, automation of all custom
ports of Pakistan will provide a comprehensive electronic data interchange
Naveed Iftikhar, Governance Specialist, Ministry of Finance citing reasons such
as outdated railway law, non-commercial structure, governance and lack of
professionals for downfall of railways he said that federal budget is more inclined
last five year plan from 1998-2005, the 80 percent of federal budget was
allocated for investment on roads as compared to mere 20 percent on Railways.
This shows government priories and as a result over the years railways inland traffic
has reduced from 40 percent to 10 percent,” he added.