GDP growth expected to reach 6% by 2023: Hammad Azhar

Energy minister asks opposition to stop deceiving masses, says economic growth rate will be 5% next year

News Desk June 02, 2021
Federal Minister for Energy Hammad Azhar. PHOTO: TWITTER/@Hammad_Azhar

In yet another positive development, Federal Minister for Energy Hammad Azhar, who also served as finance minister for a brief period, said the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth rate of Pakistan is expected to reach 6 per cent by 2023.

Briefing the media in Islamabad on Wednesday, he said that the opposition is panicking due to the country's rapid growth rate. "I want to tell the PDM [Pakistan Democratic Movement] that next year, the country's economic growth rate will be 5 per cent."

The federal minister advised the multi-party opposition to stop deceiving the masses as due to the policies during the tenures of the opposition parties, the economy of the country was destroyed.

He further said that various effective measures are being taken by the PTI government to control the rising inflation in the country.

Also read: Debt-to-GDP ratio stands at 87%, NA told

On Friday, the Annual Plan Coordination Committee (APCC) had approved the federal Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP) outlay of Rs900 billion besides endorsing the GDP growth rate target of 4.8 per cent for the upcoming fiscal year 2021-22, Minister for Planning, Development and Special Initiatives Asad Umar said while addressing a press conference in Islamabad.

“The size of federal PSDP has been increased by 40 per cent from Rs650 billion to Rs900 billion next year which would be the highest expenditures in one year in history of Pakistan,” he added.

Recalling the higher growth of 5.4 per cent during the previous government, the minister said that during that year, the country’s current account deficit (CAD) stood at around $20 billion or 6 per cent of the total GDP.

Also read: 4% GDP growth beats gloomy forecasts

On contrary, he said during the current fiscal year the current account would post a minor surplus while next year the CAD would stand at $2.3 billion or 0.7 per cent of the GDP.

“Our economy can bear the current account deficit of up to 2 per cent of GDP,” he maintained.

Asad Umar said the current year’s GDP growth of 3.94% was based on productive sectors, however, during the previous government, the growth rate was consumption-driven which was not a healthy sign for any economy.