CM lauds renewed Pak-US economic cooperation

Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif on Monday appreciated the renewed US focus on enhancing economic cooperation with Pakistan and pointed out that this policy was in line with the PML-N’s long-standing preference for building economic ties with friendly countries.
At a luncheon with the US Ambassador Richard Olson, the Chief Minister gave a comprehensive briefing to the US Ambassador and his colleagues on the initiatives taken by him and the far-reaching reforms introduced by the provincial government in various fields.
Sharif said his primary focus had always been the economic and social sectors, as he considered these essential for bringing about a meaningful improvement in the poorer sections of society.
He said his government took measures to ensure the availability of education and health facilities, even in the remote areas of the province.
“Punjab government appreciates the laudatory comments made by international organisations regarding the performance of the Punjab government. These comments have motivated us to work harder, in an efficient and a merit-based environment,” the CM said.
“We have successfully formed a government that is completely clean of corruption and nepotism. The way we have appointment thousands of teachers and health workers, the Punjab government has received praise from many international NGOs,” Sharif said.
“There are no short cuts to democracy; it takes a lot of time and effort to nourish this plant. History has convinced our party that only by strengthening democratic institutions and delivering honest and corruption-free administration can people’s faith in this system sustain,” he said.
Appreciating the chief minister for his detailed briefing on the Punjab government’s economic and social programs, US Ambassador Richard Olson emphasised on the Obama administration’s commitment to build a strong, cordial and cooperative relationship with Pakistan.
“There is great goodwill in the US for Pakistan and we admire the huge sacrifices rendered by the people of this country in the course of confronting extremism and terrorism. I assure the chief minister that the US would enhance and expand its cooperation with Pakistan, especially in the economic and social sectors,” he said.
Olson said the US realised that a strong, peaceful and democratic Pakistan could play a vital role in the region and beyond.

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