Govt committed to increase employment opportunities in country: Kanwal Shauzab

252 Kanwal Shauzab

ISLAMABAD, (APP): Parliamentary Secretary for Planning, Development, and Reforms Kanwal Shauzab Wednesday said that the present government was committed to increasing employment opportunities in the country.

During question hour in the National Assembly, she said that the provision of employment to youth was a big challenge, and priority of the present government.

Kanwal Shauzab said the government had taken various steps for reviving the economy, accelerating the pace of economic growth, and creating employment opportunities in the country.

She said that the government had introduced a construction package. It is linked to 40 sectors of small and large manufacturing industries simultaneously.

Kanwal Shauzab said it was estimated that millions of employment opportunities would be generated through construction package.

About 4.5 million workforces are employed in the construction sector, which is 7.3 percent of the total labor force.

Likewise, she said that PM’s Naya Pakistan Housing Construction Initiative Under the PM’s affordable housing initiative, a minimum of 100,000 houses would be constructed during the next 4 years with an average cost of Rs 3 million each under a low-cost housing scheme which is Rs 300 billion.

She said it was estimated that an additional Rs 200 billion would also be contributed by the private sector due to the construction package. It means an additional Rs 500 billion would be contributed by the construction sector which was 42.77% of the construction sector’s GDP contribution for 2020-21.

The parliamentary secretary said that it was estimated that about additional 2 million jobs would be created under the PM’s initiative.

She said the textile sector of Pakistan had been working at almost full-capacity production taking advantage of the government withdrawal of duties and taxes on the import of the raw cotton.

Kanwal Shauzab said that statistics had shown that the government had recreated half a million jobs by strengthening the textile industry.

She said that Prime Minister’s Skills for All: Hunarmand Pakistan Program under Kamyab Jawan initiative: NAVTTC had recently launched the program at an estimated cost of Rs. 9,880 million in line with the National Skill Strategy (NSS) focusing on interventions for skill development of youth and uplift of the sector in the country.

Under this program, she said the total enrollment in TVET institutes was around 433,237.
Regarding the PM’s Green Stimulus Package in April 2021, she said Prime Minister Imran Khan launched ‘Green Stimulus II’ focused on two objectives — job creation and restoration of the natural ecosystems.

She said the first ongoing phase was fully funded through budgetary provisions and the focus was to upscale the activity and recalibrate priority towards green job creation. As a result, employment has already been boosted to 65,000 daily wages ‘nighabaan’ jobs across the country in nursery raising, plant care, protection of natural forests, honeybee farming, and fire-fighting activities.

Through the provinces, she said that an additional 200,000 jobs were planned for 2021. In the second phase, external funding of around $60-100 million is being mobilized through multilateral donors. The second phase will include the establishment of a National Parks Service and support sanitation activities, including stormwater management, rainwater harvesting, and solid and liquid waste management, and hospital waste disposal.

This will be carried out in at least 20 main cities of the country, creating employment estimated at 600,000 daily-wage jobs.

About the employment generation under CPEC: Projects worth US$ 12.47 billion in the transport and energy infrastructure had been carried out successfully and many were under implementation, she added.

She said that in the second phase (2021-25), investments would mainly focus on industrialization, agriculture modernization, socio-economic development, and cooperation in Science & Technology that had already taken off.

Kanwal Shauzab said the purpose was to reap the dividends of the investment made in the energy and transport infrastructure.

Special Economic Zones (SEZs) development at Rashakai, Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, Allama Iqbal Industrial Zone in Faisalabad, and Dhabeji, Thatta are in different stages of development. Similarly, funds have been allocated in the current PSDP (2020-21) for utility provision to these SEZs.

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