Multilateral donors stop funding water, power projects’
August 23, 2012: The Pakistan Economy Watch (PEW) on Wednesday said the ruling coalition has discredited country to an extent that all the major international lending institutions have expressed serious reservations about its trustworthiness. The International Monetary Fund (IMF), World Bank (WB) and the Asian Development Bank (ADB) have expressed dissatisfied over the way country is being governed, it said.
Multilateral donors have stopped funding some water and power projects including 4,500 megawatt Diamer-Bhasha Dam which has diminished hopes of economic revival, said Dr Murtaza Mughal, President PEW. He said that Pakistan was already facing issues like increasing debt and fiscal deficit, lethargic growth, load-shedding, rising inflation and unemployment; now it has lost credibility with donors which will have serious repercussions.
Donors have run out of patience due to widespread corruption, inefficiency, incompetence, inability to meet targets and fulfil promises, lack of fiscal discipline, and non-serious attitude of the economic managers, he added. Dr Murtaza Mughal said that after the World Bank withdrew its support, the ADB has also refused to fund Bhasha Dam project while IMF has refused to deal with the Finance Minister for any future programme which is an insult.
The ruling coalition has neither money nor capacity to complete such mega projects without help of WB or ADB while statements to seek help from Islamic Development Bank, China, Middle East companies, and other agencies are nothing but empty words, he added.
He said that everyone agrees that mega water and power sector projects are vital to overcome water and power shortages but there is no hope in sight due to incompetent leaders.
The sitting government is directly responsible for depriving country of benefits of the Bhasha Dam project estimated at USD 8 billion, he observed. Rejecting the proposal to place a surcharge on power consumers to generate the funds for Bhasha Dam, Dr Mughal said that masses should not be made to pay for the incompetence of rulers. Government has again failed to reduce the miseries of masses while succeeding in raising slogans.-PR