Denmark to spend $3.5 mln on democratic development in Pakistan

ISLAMABAD, Feb 16 (APP): Denmark has launched a US$ 3.5 million a three-year new programme for Pakistan on democratic development and good governance. The programme, a joint collaboration with Pakistan Institute of Legislative Development and Transparency (PILDAT), was announced during the presentation of Pakistan Report of State of Democracy in South Asia an event organized recently by PILDAT with support of the Danish International development agency (Danida) here. An important feature of the new programnme is the engagement of youth in democratic processes and dialogue.

According to Denmark Ambassador to Pakistan, Sorensen  that this programme has a special focus on instilling democratic values in the youth through the Youth Parliament programme.

Under this programme, young people from across the country are trained in the values of democracy. This creates understanding, respect and tolerance for other people’s opinions – besides being an innovative approach to engage youth in such an important process, he added.

He said that Denmark is also providing support to primary education in the conflict affected areas.

“We are now also more focused on facilitating contacts between Danish and Pakistani businesses so that we can create jobs, growth and ultimately eliminate poverty”, he added.

Appreciating the Denmark support, Ahmed Bilal Mehboob, Executive Director of PILDAT said, It is in everyone’s interest that we strengthen the democratic progressive forces in Pakistan, so that we do not leave the playing field to the radical forces.

He said through this programme, PILDAT will implement five projects including Assessment of the Quality of Democracy, Youth Parliament Pakistan, Citizens periodic Reports on the performance of state institutions such as the National Assembly, Provincial Assemblies and Pakistan Institute of Parliamentary Studies (PIPS) and processes such as the study of Civil-Military Relations and learning from international examples while maintaining close inter-action with national and provincial legislators from various parties,  Comparative Assessment and Score Card on Quality of Governance in Federal and Provincial Governments and Development of Political Parties and leadership It may be mentioned here that the new PILDAT programme is a part of the overall US$ 50 million development programme for Pakistan, which was launched by the Government of Denmark in November 2013.

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