Prime Minister Imran Khan has proposed a ten point agenda to the world community to avert economic collapse in the developing countries due to COVID-19.
Addressing a special session of the UN General Assembly, he called for debt suspension till the end of the pandemic for low income and most stressed countries; cancellation of debt of least developed countries; restructuring of the public sector debt of developing countries and a general allocation of special drawing rights of 500 billion dollars.
The Prime Minister also proposed concessional financing to lower income countries through multilateral development banks; provision of loans at lower costs; fulfillment of the 0.7 percent official development assistance commitments; mobilizing the required 1.5 trillion dollars annual investment in sustainable infrastructure; mobilizing 100 billion dollars per year for climate action in developing countries and halting of illicit financial outflows from developing to rich countries.
Imran Khan stressed for a collective response to recover from the Covid crisis and achieve sustainable development goals.
Alluding to the effects of the pandemic, the Prime Minister said the COVID-19 pandemic has infected nearly 65 million people and killed sadly close to 1.5 million.
He expressed hope that whenever the vaccine is available, it must be offered to everyone.
He said the pandemic has caused immense human suffering and the deepest global economic contraction since the great depression of the 1930s.
In Pakistan, he said, we had a successful policy of smart lockdowns to control the pandemic. He said our efforts were aimed at ensuring that not only do we save people from the virus, but also prevent them from dying from hunger.
He said we provided a relief package of around 8 billion dollars to support the poor and to keep the economy afloat at the same time.
He said so far, our strategy has worked, but now we are confronted with a far more aggressive second wave of the virus.
He said we are facing now the challenge of maintaining and reviving our economic growth as well as dealing with increasing number of cases which are occupying our hospital beds.