Prime Minister Yousef Raza Gilani has unveiled a plan for economic revival for the long-suffering NorthWest Frontier Province and nearby tribal areas.
The package is divided into three components — fiscal, banking and insurance — for businessmen, traders and farmers of the NWFP, Fata and Pata (Provincially Administered Tribal Areas).
The comprehensive aid package illustrates the following:
- The government fully understands the economies of these regions have been prevented from progressing in positive directions due to the violence and militancy of extremist groups.
- There can be no doubt that this is truly a package that recognizes how to work with the local economies. Relief measures in the package include exemptions from different taxes, reduction in mark-up rates on small loans and writing off agricultural loans.
- The government hopes to revitalize the nation’s economy whilst also working towards anti-terrorism. Providing such a well-conceptualized and pragmatic economic package will do tremendous good in the coming years, as it will open the doors to opportunity for many Pakistanis.
The sheer necessity of such a policy, and the long-term hopes for development of these areas makes this a very promising package.