CM ADDRESSES CONCLUDING SESSION OF 2ND INTERNATIONAL SEMINAR ON INVESTMENT OPPORTUNITIES IN PUNJAB

Chief Minister Punjab Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif has said that during the 70 year history of Pakistan, not only thousands, but lakhs of agreements and Memorandums of Understanding (MoUs) have been signed, but a very small number of them was materialized. However, the speed with which the agreements signed during Chinese President Xi Jinping’s visit to Pakistan in April 2015, have been implemented upon, has surprised the whole world from Washington to Tokyo and from Delhi to Moscow. The agreements and MoUs signed during the previous seminar about business opportunities in Punjab in 2015, under the leadership of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, have also been speedily implemented, and as a result of these agreements, billions of dollars investment has been made in Punjab. Like the first international seminar, the second international business seminar, being held in Lahore, has proved very successful from every respect, and the industrialists and investors coming from 26 different countries of the world, have signed agreements worth billions of dollars for investment in different sectors in the province. The opponents of development and prosperity of Pakistan are unnerved and perplexed, and the same is depicted at their sad and disappointed faces. These elements do not want the nation and the country to prosper; and that is why, they are fretful that a revolution of development and prosperity has been brought in by Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif in Pakistan. The speedy development of the country has left these elements in deep stigma; while Pakistan is fully boisterous. By the grace of Allah Almighty, Pakistan will continue to progress with the same speed and will be developed to regain its lost glory. It is better to lead a simple life than to enjoy luxurious lifestyle with all the compromises and strings attached to it. We should learn this lesson and move further to break the begging bowl with our hard work. By the grace of Allah Almighty, the day would come soon when the begging bowl would be broken and culture of dependency would come to an end. Pakistan shall get a position of prestige and honor in the world-over. I would appeal the national and international investors to invest in Pakistan, and in the Punjab, and set up projects of development and prosperity to earn profits and provide services to the people. Your investment would be fully protected, he added.

Punjab Chief Minister Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif expressed these views while addressing the concluding session of 2nd international seminar on investment opportunities in the Punjab at a local hotel today. On the occasion, more than 60 agreements and MoUs of international investment in the Punjab were signed. Provincial Ministers, Diplomats, Consul Generals of China and Turkey, members of the parliament, Chief Secretary, investors from 26 countries of the world, and local traders and industrialists attended the seminar.

The Chief Minister said that holding of 2nd business seminar in Lahore is a wonderful achievement as hundreds of investors from across the globe have participated in this seminar. This seminar has proved success from every respect as more than 400 investors from 26 countries have been gathered under one roof. There is no doubt that it was an expression of confidence of our friendly countries over the investment friendly policies of Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif. It proves that the effective strategy of transparency is being implemented under the leadership of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif in the country, including in the Punjab. He said that an international business seminar was held in Lahore in 2015 as well, during which different agreements and MoUs were signed, and aluminum project in Faisalabad which was signed during that seminar, has been inaugurated yesterday through remote control. Similar projects have also been completed. He said that Pakistan’s largest coal power project is going to be inaugurated after 48 hours, and the Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif shall formally inaugurate this 1320MW project. An investment of 1.8 billion dollars has been made on it, and this project has been completed in a record period of time under the CPEC. The foundation stone of this project was laid on 31 July 2015, and this project has been completed in a record period of 22 months; and today 660MW electricity of this project has been provided to the national grid. This was simply unprecedented in Pakistan earlier. This is the model of transparency, speed and quality, and we are taking this model along. He said that there was a time in the past when agreements were signed but were not implemented upon. That is why, I have lost trust on MoUs, and I try to enter into agreements, while avoiding the MoUs. The speed and transparency with which agreements were implemented upon during the tenure of Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif is simply incomparable. After the tour of Chinese President to Pakistan, the agreements were implemented in a unique manner, and the elements which used to allege that these agreements were only a formality, are themselves perplexed, worried and disappointed today. A new history of transparency, speed and quality has been written.

He said that under the leadership of Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif, the political and military leadership has provided best security to all the CPEC projects. The Punjab government has set up special protection unit which has been providing security to CPEC and other important projects on its own. He told the investors that their security is his responsibility. You are our brothers and you will get the same security which has been provided to me. Let’s invest in Punjab because tremendous potentials of investment are available in the province. He told that he has held marathon meetings with heads of different investment companies, and added that he is happy that investors have shown great interest in investment in the Punjab, and have also commended the investment friendly policies of the Punjab government. The investors of China, Turkey and other countries are given a VVIP status, and they are provided with every facility in the Punjab. My investors are my masters and our hearts beat in unison as we are like one family.

The IMF, World Bank, Moody’s and other international institutions are acknowledging the improved economy in Pakistan; while the economy of Pakistan has been termed as the emerging economy. I am happy that the investors, attending the seminar, have shown their commitment and confidence to invest in the Punjab. He said that our friends also ask for “do more” but they demand “do more” only for improvement in healthcare and education facilities, making of Pakistan as a welfare state, provision of socio-economic justice and basic facilities to the common man. And, we feel proud of such friends. The Chief Minister thanked Pakistan’s ambassador to China, Turkey and other countries, ambassador of China to Pakistan, ambassador of Turkey to Pakistan, Chinese and Turkish Consul Generals, concerned Provincial Ministers, Chief Secretary, Chairman P&D, secretaries of the concerned departments and officials of Punjab Board of Investment & Trade, for successful holding of this seminar, and said that they have jointly worked like a team to make the holding of this seminar a success. Chairman P&D Jehanzeb Khan also spoke on the occasion.