ISLAMABAD: Pakistan direly needs more infrastructural development projects with joint collaboration of the public and private sectors to accelerate economic development in the country. Newly elected government is focusing more in Public Private Partnership. This was disclosed in a seminar on “Public Private Partnership-Public Sector Role in Management PPPs” here, on Thursday.
Besides Deputy Chairman, Planning Commission Salman Faruqui, other speakers included: Muhammad Zubair, member Infrastructure Management Unit, Peter Fedon, country director Asian Development Bank, Aijaz Ahmad, CEO IPDF and Inaam-ul-Haq, former Chairman, Policy Planning Cell, Punjab. The prime purpose of organizing this seminar was to give awareness to senior Federal and Provincial Government officials. Apart from Deputy Chairman, Planning Commission, senior officials from the Ministry of Finance, the Planning Commission and the Provincial Governments attended the seminar.
The seminar was attended by 100 senior level officers from various public sector organizations engaged in infrastructure development activities. During the seminar the speakers highlighted the constraints and impediments to Private Sector Participation in infrastructure investment as well as the strategy to overcome these bottlenecks to PPP. The seminar was concluded by the Secretary Planning and Development Division. He emphasized the need to encourage and motivate Private Sector Participation through various measures in infrastructure development as the government alone cannot deliver.
Deputy Chairman, Planning Commission Salman Faruqui, said Public Private Partnerships can play a key role in increasing resources and improving efficiencies by helping the country access not just finance, but also managerial expertise, new technologies, better project design and implementation and more efficient use of resources. Infrastructure Management Unit, Planning Commission is currently implementing the project “Infrastructure Institutional Capacity Building and Project Preparatory Facility through technical assistance from Asian Development Bank.
The objective of the project is to assist the country in enhancing the enabling environment for Infrastructure Investment by the Private Sector, developing Public Private Partnership modalities and supporting institutional capacity building. IMU conducted a diagnostic study in 2007 on “Constraints to Private Sector Investment in Infrastructure” to identify constraints to private sector investment in Infrastructure.
The consultants have underlined the urgent need to create appropriate capacity and capability according to international standards for dealing with Public Private Partnership issues in Pakistan. Accordingly, the sub project on “Integration and Streamlining PPP in the Planning Process” was created in 2008, which is under implementation by IMU/PMU with the following objectives:
To establish dedicated core group of PPP experts in the Planning Commission as to deal with policy, Programmes and project activities with a view to recommending specific projects to be processed through PPP cycle pertaining to all sectors. To build capacity in other national agencies involved in Infrastructure development for handling PPP projects. To establish a resource center on PPP in Planning Commission, create awareness on PPP in the country.-SANA