Successful completion of democratic journey an evidence of political maturity of the nation: President
President notes that tax collection has improved, foreign exchange reserves increased, and this year growth has been 4.7%
Completion of three years of democracy shows system is capable to sustain crisis
President Mamnoon Hussain says that successful completion of three years of democratic journey is testimony to the political maturity of the nation. He was addressing joint session of the Parliament in Islamabad today. He said this is reflective of the fact that the system is capable enough to sustain crises and take the country forward on the path of durable progress and stability. Mamnoon Hussain said "government ensures rule of law, economic development and provision of basic needs to the people easily overcome challenges, succeed in stabilizing democracy and reinforce the relationship between an individual and the state. Both the government and opposition are cognizant of this and are formulating policies in the light of this philosophy to strengthen democracy. It is now responsibility of each individual, class and institution to earnestly contribute towards reinforcing this positive trend. Government, be it of any political party, should formulate policies in accordance with the tested principle so that democracy can take roots and the people may lead a prosperous life."
President notes that tax system and collection has improved, foreign exchange reserves increased, GDP has steadily expanded and this year growth has been 4.7%. He said, "budget deficit stands reduced, inflation controlled and the rupee stabilized. These positive indicators will encourage foreign investors and accelerate our economic progress, which will be further boosted by CPEC. Such a welcome progress on the economic front is possible only through consistent and realistic policies. More steps should be taken to pass on the benefits of improved economic situation to the common man."
Mamnoon Hussain said, "Welfare steps include business opportunities and technical training for youth, comprehensive programme for poverty alleviation, PM's health insurance, subsidy on essential consumer goods, special package for farmers, educational facilities and stipends for underdeveloped areas and provision of laptops to talented students."
About CPEC, the President said at this juncture of our history, we need national consensus and solidarity and its significance is even greater in the context of CPEC. He said, "There is no weight in the reservations expressed by certain quarters regarding the Corridor. He expressed satisfaction that concerted efforts have led to national consensus on the matter and apprehensions if any should be removed through dialogue. He said, “Schedule of the CPEC clearly shows the project is not of benefit to any particular government, political party or group of politicians but purely a national project. It is responsibility of the nation to remove every internal and external obstacle in the way of its implementation. Nation should unite on the agenda of economic stability for continuity in policies in all situations." He hoped political parties and other stakeholders will soon agree upon this national agenda.
Steps taken to minimize energy crisis
The President also recounted the measures and projects launched by the government to address the energy crisis including LNG and electricity import and construction of water reservoirs. He said, "dream of national development would materialize only when there is peace and conducive business environment."
Efforts for maintaining law and order
President expressed satisfaction that efforts to restore law and order in different areas particularly in FATA, Balochistan and Karachi have produced positive results. He said, "objectives of Zarb-e-Azb would be achieved by the end of the year, leading to internal peace and security. Nation needs to fully stand by all law enforcing agencies to completely eliminate terrorism and lawlessness. National monument should be built in memory of all those who have sacrificed their lives in the war against terror." He urged the government and the opposition to work in tandem to utilize potential of the youth and women.
Message to Global Community and Foreign Policy
Addressing the world community, the President said Pakistan's foreign policy is based on the principle of peace for development and peaceful neighborhood. He said, "main cause of tension in the region is Kashmir issue, which is an unfinished agenda of the partition of sub-continent. As long as the issue not resolved in accordance with wishes of Kashmiri people and UN resolutions, the problems of the region will remain unresolved. He also urged India to reciprocate Pakistan's sincere overtures for dialogue. He said, "Pakistan is of the view that peace and stability in Afghanistan is imperative for peace in the region. Pakistan has special relationship with the Islamic world including Turkey, Iran, Saudi Arabia, other countries of Middle East and Central Asia. Defence cooperation agreement has been recently concluded with Russia and under another agreement, Russia is likely to invest two billion dollars for laying Karachi-Lahore gas pipeline." He particularly referred to Pakistan's cordial relations with China, USA and the European Union. He noted with satisfaction that the next SAARC summit will be held in Pakistan in November this year. He said Pakistan strongly believes in nuclear security and made state of the art arrangements for safety of its nuclear installations. He expressed the confidence that we would triumphant in our resolve to eliminate corruption. President Mamnoon Hussain advised countrymen not to be despondent as Pakistan would soon regain its rightful status in the comity of nations.
Bhawan Das (Leader, PML-N):
“In my view, the President has covered all the important aspects of the three years rule of incumbent government. He also represented the voice of people in his address which is highly appreciable. The President termed CPEC as an important part of our future prosperity. The president also dilated upon the steps taken by the government for the protection of rights of minorities and women. It was a historic address which gave comprehensive coverage to all the important issues of our country.”
Senator Ghous Muhammad Khan Niazi (Leader, PML-N):
“When we assumed power, we inherited the problems of terrorism and foreign policy. Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif is the most experienced leader in whole of Asia and it is a well-known fact known by every country. The incumbent government made special efforts to improve relations with all the neighboring countries. Mian Nawaz Sharif extended a hand of friendship to India, but at the same time did not compromise on unsettled issues with New Delhi. We also started various projects in cooperation with Central Asia to bring key natural resources to our country. CASA 1000 and TAPI are the notable examples of this cooperation. The relations with Iran have also improved. Pakistan played a very helpful role in Saudi-Yemen crisis and made efforts to mediate between the two nations. Due to CPEC, the image of Pakistan has significantly improved in the comity of nations. This project was under consideration for sometime but Chinese entrusted Mian Nawaz Sharif for the implementation of this project. Our relations with Russia have also been improving."
Mian Abdul Manan (Leader, PML-N):
“President Mamnoon Hussain while addressing the joint session of the Parliament today highlighted some core challenges being faced by Pakistan. He also highlighted the incumbent government’s efforts to combat these challenges. President also expressed satisfaction in efforts to improve law and order situation in different areas of the country, particularly in FATA, Balochistan and Karachi. Gas shortage affected the industrial sector of our country and as a result exports of Pakistan had reduced. But the present government initiated a number of energy related projects to overcome gas and power shortages and most of these projects are expected to be completed till 2018. The PML-N government is trying to facilitate all the provinces of the country without any discrimination which is a positive gesture.”
Maiza Hameed (Leader, PML-N):
“First of all, I would like to congratulate the nation for the successful operation of Prime Minister Mian Nawaz Sharif. Today’s address of President Mamnoon Hussain reflects that democratic system in our country is going stronger and more stable. The opposition parties need to sit with the government to resolve all the outstanding issues. The international community is appreciating the prudent economic policies of PML-N government as the economic indicators are showing positive trend. President has rightly said that we need national consensus and solidarity on timely completion of China Pakistan Economic Corridor project. CPEC project is not for the benefit of any particular government, political party or group of politicians but purely a national project.”
Javed Abbasi (Senator, PML-N):
“Prime Minister Mian Nawaz Sharif enjoys great respect in Muslim Ummah. Pakistan is the only Muslim country having the nuclear power. Present government is taking keen interest to improve its bilateral relations with all countries including India. Many Heads of State have visited Pakistan and signed certain trade and development agreements. China has heavily invested in China Pakistan Economic Corridor which means that Chinese leadership has confidence on the policies of PML-N government. Pakistan has also improved its relationship with Russia. Economy of Pakistan is improving with every passing day under the leadership of Mian Nawaz Sharif. ”