All delegations of the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank, the Asian Development Bank and other international financial institutions would visit Pakistan as per their schedules during October and November.
In a statement issued in Islamabad, Ministry of Finance spokesperson said that the delegations would visit Pakistan as according to their agreed schedule for making deliberations and discussing the economic reforms agenda and to ensure their assistance to take forward these reforms.
At a meeting chaired by Adviser to Prime Minister on Finance Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh, the government’s economic team assigned technical teams from the Economic Affairs Division, Planning Commission and the World Bank to chalk out a roadmap for simplifying structure of existing approval process of development portfolio while identifying areas of interventions and decisions and report back in a month.
The meeting was attended by Minister for Economic Affairs Hammad Azhar, Minister for Planning Khusro Bakhtiyar, Adviser on Institutional Reforms and Austerity Dr Ishrat Hussain and senior officials of the State Bank of Pakistan. The Controller General of Accounts, senior officials from the Finance Division, Planning Development and Reforms and Economic Affairs Division also attended the meeting.
The meeting was given a joint presentation by the Economic Affairs Division and the World Bank on different options to simplify the structure of existing approval processes of the development portfolio in order to shorten the project conception time frame while also ensuring presence of required funds, availability of project staff and timely procurement.
The initiative aims to bring implementation preparedness to a new level besides incorporating capacity at the implementation level to conceive and prepare project pipeline in line with the annual and medium term government frameworks. Besides, it was aiming at to upfront preparation of safeguards and procurement documents and appointment of relevant staff so that implementation can start immediately upon approvals and signing of loan agreements.
The government intends to digitize the whole planning process to speed-up decision making leading towards timely implementation of projects. It was decided that technical teams of the World Bank, Planning Commission and Economic Affairs Division would chalk out a roadmap while identifying the specific areas of interventions and decisions and report back to the forum in three to four weeks time.