Pakistan foreign loan liabilities have risen by $97 million in the first four months

Pakistan foreign loan liabilities have risen by $97 million in the first four months of the current fiscal year as the government has taken $555 million in loan and grant from friendly countries and International Financial Institutions (IFI) as compared to $458 million obtained during the corresponding period last fiscal year. Secretary Economic Affairs and Statistics Division Abdul Wajid Rana briefed members of National Assembly Standing committee on Economic Affairs and Statistics met under chairmanship of Malik Azmat Khan in the Parliament House.
The committee discussed progress on foreign funds and grants for programmes in Health Sector; selections of students under exchange programmes and performance along with expenditure of Economic Affairs Division (EAD) during 1st Quarter of Financial Year 2011-2012. Secretary EAD briefed the committee in detailed on the agenda items regarding the progress of foreign funds and grants for programmes in health sector. He told members that $265 million have been received for 15 health projects by Germany, Japan, UK and IDA under various programmes $216 million for these projects is yet to be received by donor agencies.
Committee directed the ministry for inclusion of Khyber Pakthunkhwa headquarter Peshawar for operations of cataract patients in current project funded by Chinese grant. Secretary told that EAD have finalised project related loan with the Islamic Development Bank (IDB) under country partnership programme for three years.
On the question of distribution of Energy Savers programme for energy conservation, secretary told that ministry of water and power have decided to re-bid for procurement after which ADB will be evaluating it. The bank will provide financial assistance for free distribution of 30 million energy saver bulbs (CFLs) in the country. These energy savers will help reduce peaks hour demand over 1000 MW.
Secretary also briefed the committee on selection criteria of Students Exchange Program with China and Turkey and also apprised the committee for distribution of provincial quota on the basis of Federal Public Service Commission (FPSC) rules. He told that students aged between 18-25, 36 per cent from Punjab, 20 per cent from Sindh, 14 per cent from KP, 10 per cent from Baluchistan, 05 per cent each from Azad Kashmir, Gilgit -Baltistan, Islamabad and from minorities went to visit abroad that includes 35 women from all over the country last year.
While informing on the budget expenditure; Secretary EAD told that out of total Rs421.48 million the ministry consumed Rs46.33 million in first quarter of 2011-12. Committee directed the ministry to provide province wise quota list of youth exchange programme beneficiaries. Committee further directed the ministry to provide the last ten years fund utilisation details of ministries of water and power, interior and petroleum and natural resources.

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