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Qatari leadership holds Pakistanis in great esteem and would like to have increased number of Pakistani workforce in the country to contribute more to the development of the country, said Pakistan's Minister of Interior Ahsan Iqbal.
Iqbal, who also holds the portfolio of Minister for Planning, Development and Reforms, was in Doha to attend First Major Event Safety and Security Conference organised by Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy and Interpol.
Speaking to community members at the Pakistan embassy, the minister observed that his compatriots were treated by Qatari leadership with deep respect and honour.
"I am very happy to learn from Qatari leadership during my current visit that the members of Pakistani community in Qatar have established a positive image in the country and looked upon with respect. Qatar's Prime Minister told me today that the number of Pakistanis in Qatar has reached 127,000 and they would like to see this figure crossing 200,000 soon," said Iqbal while stressing the need for the Pakistani community to maintain their brand image in cooperation with the Pakistan embassy.
He welcomed Qatari government's decision to include Pakistan in the list of countries whose citizens are entitled for on-arrival tourist visa.
He said Pakistan may consider giving similar status to Qatari nationals on reciprocal basis.
Talking of achievements of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) government, Iqbal said the wise policies of the government have put the country on the road to progress and prosperity unlike how it was in 2013 before the government came to power.
He said the $46 billion worth China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) programme will be a boon for the country's economy.
"The CPEC programme will help Pakistan to meet its energy needs and establish modern infrastructure in roads and rail. Works on $27 billion-worth projects have either been initiated or finances for these projects have been approved," Iqbal said.
He added that work on Gwadar port is in progress and, on completion it will be counted among the most modern smart port city in Asia.
He said automobile giants are eyeing to set up manufacturing units in Pakistan while a company from Holland has made investment of $400 million in the food sector, adding that Pakistani workforce was finding job opportunities as a result of the CPEC project.
The minister said that 10,000MW electricity would be added to the national grid soon while recalling that, in the last 66 years, only 16,000 MW was generated by the erstwhile governments.
He said to ensure uninterrupted supply of electricity, the government was using different sources to generate electricity like hydel, thermal, LNG and solar."3,600MW electricity will be produced using Qatari LNG," said the minister.
He regretted that a specific group and a section of the media in the country was spreading disappointment among masses and some elements want to create an environment of mistrust between the army and the government.
Referring to the report of PricewaterhouseCoopers (PWC), he said that Pakistan would be among big-twenty economies of the world by 2030 if the country maintained economic pace.
He said Bloomberg, Wall Street Journal and The Economist all have praised the pace of economic growth of Pakistan.
He said continuation of polices and political stability were key factors in the development of any country but unfortunately Pakistan faced martial law every 10 years."None of the prime minister in 70-year history of Pakistan was given the opportunity to complete his tenure of five years," regretted Iqbal.
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