Shehbaz seeks ADB support for educational, health sectors

LAHORE: Punjab Chief Minister Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif said on Thursday that Punjab was far ahead to other provinces due to its exemplary development in education, health, agriculture and other sectors.

He was talking to a five-member delegation of Asian Development Bank (ADB), headed by country director for Pakistan Xiaohong Yang, called on him.

On the occasion, progress on different projects started in collaboration with the ADB was reviewed. The meeting agreed to further extend mutual cooperation in different sectors including public-private partnership based projects.

Talking on the occasion, the chief minister said that a number of development projects were being completed in collaboration with the ADB in different sectors including irrigation and energy. “Asian Development Bank is providing $500 million funding for irrigation and energy projects. ADB should provide development funds to the tune of $1.5 billion every year for health, education and other sectors. Financial support of ADB for development schemes aiming at public welfare during the next five years in Punjab will be appreciated by the government,” he said.

The chief minister said that Greater Thal Canal and Greater Cholistan Canal Projects would also be completed with the ADB funding and added that water reserves would be developed in the outback of Cholistan to save canal and flood water. “The vast expanse of Cholistan will be made green and cultivable through Water Resource Management Project. The Cholistan will be developed as a green basket not only for Punjab but for the whole of the country as well and contacts with Gulf States will be further improved by providing different facilities in Cholistan including airport. ADB’s support for water treatment plant in Faisalabad is praiseworthy,” he said.

The chief minister said that positive results had been gained for achieving the development targets through continued hard work.

“Punjab has the credit for introducing a cold chain project for distribution of medicines. More 50 mobile health units will be provided for providing healthcare facilities to the people in far-flung areas. Meanwhile, best doctors from around the world will be invited to work in Multan Institute of Kidney Diseases (MIKD). A helicopter service is also being introduced for transportation of specialist doctors in remote hinterlands. The Punjab government is also giving Rs 1,000 stipend to girl students to increase literacy rate in the womenfolk. Mobile phones will also be provided for prosperity of the farmers and to help increase the agricultural productivity. Meanwhile, interest-free small loans are being provided to the skilled youth under Chief Minister’s Self- Employment Scheme. Purple line metro train project will also be started through financial support of ADB adding that its technical support for traffic management and planning is commendable. Had KPK accepted our proposal for the start of metro bus service earlier, the project would have been completed by now,” he added.

Country Director Xiaohong Yang said that the fame of ‘Punjab Speed’ had spread around the world. “Due to the completion of Punjab Safe City project, Lahore has become a fully secured city for investment and tourism. Development vision of Chief Minister Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif is commendable and exemplary and development projects have catalyzed positive change in the province. In fact, financial collaboration with a rapidly developing Punjab is an honour for the ADB and leadership abilities of Shehbaz Sharif for composite development in Punjab cannot be forgotten,” she said.

Head of PKUK Donath Walton, Urban Unit’s Shaukat Shafi, Energy Unit’s Asad Ali and Head of Financial Sector Shuzab Ali were included in the delegation while Chairman P&D Jehanzeb Khan, MD Punjab Mass Transit Authority Sibtain Fazal-e-Haleem and others were also present on the occasion.

Punjab Chief Minister Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif said on Thursday that Punjab was far ahead to other provinces due to its exemplary development in education, health, agriculture and other sectors.

He was talking to a five-member delegation of Asian Development Bank (ADB), headed by country director for Pakistan Xiaohong Yang, called on him.

On the occasion, progress on different projects started in collaboration with the ADB was reviewed. The meeting agreed to further extend mutual cooperation in different sectors including public-private partnership based projects.

Talking on the occasion, the chief minister said that a number of development projects were being completed in collaboration with the ADB in different sectors including irrigation and energy. “Asian Development Bank is providing $500 million funding for irrigation and energy projects. ADB should provide development funds to the tune of $1.5 billion every year for health, education and other sectors. Financial support of ADB for development schemes aiming at public welfare during the next five years in Punjab will be appreciated by the government,” he said.

The chief minister said that Greater Thal Canal and Greater Cholistan Canal Projects would also be completed with the ADB funding and added that water reserves would be developed in the outback of Cholistan to save canal and flood water. “The vast expanse of Cholistan will be made green and cultivable through Water Resource Management Project. The Cholistan will be developed as a green basket not only for Punjab but for the whole of the country as well and contacts with Gulf States will be further improved by providing different facilities in Cholistan including airport. ADB’s support for water treatment plant in Faisalabad is praiseworthy,” he said.

The chief minister said that positive results had been gained for achieving the development targets through continued hard work.

“Punjab has the credit for introducing a cold chain project for distribution of medicines. More 50 mobile health units will be provided for providing healthcare facilities to the people in far-flung areas. Meanwhile, best doctors from around the world will be invited to work in Multan Institute of Kidney Diseases (MIKD). A helicopter service is also being introduced for transportation of specialist doctors in remote hinterlands. The Punjab government is also giving Rs 1,000 stipend to girl students to increase literacy rate in the womenfolk. Mobile phones will also be provided for prosperity of the farmers and to help increase the agricultural productivity. Meanwhile, interest-free small loans are being provided to the skilled youth under Chief Minister’s Self- Employment Scheme. Purple line metro train project will also be started through financial support of ADB adding that its technical support for traffic management and planning is commendable. Had KPK accepted our proposal for the start of metro bus service earlier, the project would have been completed by now,” he added.

Country Director Xiaohong Yang said that the fame of ‘Punjab Speed’ had spread around the world. “Due to the completion of Punjab Safe City project, Lahore has become a fully secured city for investment and tourism. Development vision of Chief Minister Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif is commendable and exemplary and development projects have catalyzed positive change in the province. In fact, financial collaboration with a rapidly developing Punjab is an honour for the ADB and leadership abilities of Shehbaz Sharif for composite development in Punjab cannot be forgotten,” she said.

Head of PKUK Donath Walton, Urban Unit’s Shaukat Shafi, Energy Unit’s Asad Ali and Head of Financial Sector Shuzab Ali were included in the delegation while Chairman P&D Jehanzeb Khan, MD Punjab Mass Transit Authority Sibtain Fazal-e-Haleem and others were also present on the occasion.

 Published in Daily Times, February  9th2018.