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World Bank lauds govt’s economic reforms  

World Bank lauds govt’s economic reforms  

ISLAMABAD: World Bank Vice President Ms Ceyla Pazarbasioglu on Thursday appreciated the economic reforms program initiated by Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) led government to stabilize the country’s economy and accelerate broad-based growth, according to media.

She made this statement during a meeting with Adviser to Prime Minister on Finance and Revenue Dr. Abdul Hafeez Shaikh at his office in Islamabad. Pazarbasioglu, the Vice President for Equitable Growth, Finance and Institutions (EFI) at the World Bank Group (WBG), along with a delegation met with the adviser.

According to a statement issued by the ministry, matters of mutual interest, economy, trade, Resilient Institutions Strengthening Program (RISE), tax regime and other issues were discussed in the meeting.

The meeting also focused on areas of harmonization of tax regime, circular debt strategy and national tariff policy matters.

Speaking on the occasion, Dr. Abdul Hafeez Shaikh said, “Pakistan values the financial and technical support provided by the World Bank for the institutional reforms and economic development of the country.”

He highlighted the government’s focus on expediting speedy rollout of the World Bank pipeline of projects and actions being taken in this regard.

The World Bank’s officials apprised Hafeez Shaikh on the bank’s assistance being provided to harmonize the sales tax across Pakistan to further improve the business environment and enhance revenue collection, read the statement.

He was also updated on the progress under the US$ 400 million Pakistan Raises Revenue Project which aims to strengthen the Federal Board of Revenue’s (FBR) and create a sustainable increase in Pakistan’s domestic tax revenue.

The project will target raising the tax-to-GDP ratio to 17 percent by financial year 2023-2024 and widening the tax net from the current 1.2 million to at least 3.5 million active taxpayers.