World Bank to provide $ 918 million for three programmes

Islamabad: World Bank is to provide $ 918 million in loan to Pakistan for the execution of three programs aimed at increasing domestic revenue and development of higher education sector.

An agreement to this effect was signed in Islamabad on Tuesday. The ceremony was witnessed by Adviser on Finance Abdul Hafeez Sheikh.

Of the total amount, $ 400 million will be used in a program aimed at increasing the domestic revenue of Pakistan by broadening the tax base and facilitating compliance.

The targets of the revenue program include increasing Pakistan’s tax to GDP ratio to seventeen percent, increasing the number of active tax payers to 3.5 million, reduce the compliance burden of paying taxes and improving the efficiency of custom controls.

Another $ 400 million will be used in higher education development program. The amount will be spent to support research excellence in strategic sectors of the economy, improve teaching and learning and strengthening governance in the higher education sector.

The remaining $ 118 million will be used for the revenue mobilization and resource management program of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

The Program will help the Government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa to mobilize own source revenue to address the constraint of limited fiscal space for investment and public service provision and efficient and strategic use of the province’s financial resources.

Later, World Bank’s Country Director Patchamuthu Illangovan held a meeting with the Adviser on Finance Abdul Hafeez Sheikh.

The Adviser thanked the World Bank for extending continuous support to Pakistan in its efforts to achieve the sustainable economic development of the country.

Talking to the media, Adviser on Finance Hafeez Sheikh said the World Bank is a reliable partner and “it is in partnership with us for the economic development of Pakistan.” He was confident that the loan facility extended by the World Bank will help in the socio economic development of the country.