LAHORE: The Punjab Assembly’s Steering Committee on Public-Private Partnership (PPP), on Friday, has approved afforestation project in six districts of South Punjab which is being implemented by South Punjab Forest Company (SPFC), a subsidiary of Forestry, Wildlife & Fisheries Department.
The project will be executed in collaboration with the private sector that will promote sustainable forestry investments in the region and bring numerous economic and environmental benefits as well.
The Steering Committee was chaired by Planning & Development (P&D) Department Minister Malik Nadeem Kamran while it was attended by senior officials of the relevant government departments and members of the steering committee.
Officials from the SPFC including Chairman Sardar Awais Ahmed Khan Leghari, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Tahir Rasheed, CFO Salman Ahmad and Director (Projects & Operations) Hafiz Muhammad Awais also attended the meeting.
Malik Nadeem Kamran stated that this project was one of the many initiatives being undertaken by the government of Punjab to bring a green revolution in the province.
According to Tahir Rasheed, “The approval of SPFC’s project from the steering committee is a landmark achievement and the first one in the history of forestry in Pakistan – a move that will galvanise the private sector to invest in forestry and earn huge returns.
The project’s approval is for 15 years and will have immense ecological and economical benefits alike, as it will help to sequester carbon emissions, adapt and mitigate climate change, provide livelihood opportunities to local communities and most importantly sustain the wood-based industry. Furthermore, it will help to save the remaining forests of Pakistan.
Tahir Rasheed also briefed the members of the steering committee regarding the environmental benefits of the initiative, including carbon sequestration of approximately 5.6 million tonnes, plantation of almost 11.4 million trees on two rotations and creation of almost 15,000 green jobs. “On the approval of the project from the steering committee, a green revolution is underway which will revive the forestry sector in Pakistan and will offer a promising future for all”, he added.