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Gen. Asim’s One Year: Vision of Development and Economic Prosperity! By Kashif Mirza

Byadmin

Nov 30, 2023

The writer is an

economist, anchor,

analyst and the

President of All

 Pakistan Private

Schools’ Federation

president@Pakistan

privateschools.com

General Syed Asim Munir successfully completed his one year as Army Chief, and during his successful tenure, he expressed his determination and assured to steer Pakistan out of the prevailing crises, stating, “We have decided to lead Pakistan out of the current crisis.” Whenever the country faced difficult times, the Pakistan Army responded with hard work for the people. One year of his service has culminated at record-breaking success stories. When the chief of the Pakistani army took the lead to save the country from the crisis, the economy came out of the ventilator and started breathing. His new professional journey began at a time when there was political turmoil in the country; when the country was suffering from inflation, and there were diplomatic challenges. Despite not being in the spotlight throughout his one-year tenure, Gen Munir’s behind-the-scenes efforts have significantly contributed to the overall stability of the country. His robust support for the government and the active role of the army played a pivotal role in steering Pakistan away from financial and economic default. Under his leadership, foreign relations have seen a positive transformation, with strengthened ties with the United States, United Arab Emirates (UAE), Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA), and China. Gen Munir’s adept backdoor diplomacy has played a crucial role in fostering these relationships. In a short span of one year, Gen Asim Munir has left an indelible mark on Pakistan’s economy and diplomatic relations. His tenure has been characterized by resilience, strategic vision, and a commitment to the nation’s progress. On the special instructions of Army Chief General Asim Munir, the Pakistan Army in collaboration with the country’s institutions launched a large-scale operation against all the illegal activities which worsened the economy like termites. Army Chief General Asim Munir made several important foreign visits during one year, including Britain, China, Saudi Arabia, Iran, Turkey, Uzbekistan, the United Arab Emirates, and Kuwait. In the war against terrorism, he made it clear that there would be no negotiations against terrorists and also ensured the implementation of the revised National Action Plan, participated in the central and provincial apex committee meetings, and supported the police for operations in the rural areas. Ensured the safety of foreign nationals working on CPEC and other projects, and also played an important role in restoring peace in Afghanistan. A large-scale successful crackdown was carried out against the illegal migrants, and a deadline was given to the foreign illegal migrants to leave the country, and the success credit goes to General Asim Munir. He praised the Pakistanis for their pride, self-respect, and competence, recognizing the nation’s potential to overcome challenges. Referring to the prevailing economic challenges, the army chief remarked, “All Pakistanis have collectively rejected the beggar’s bowl.” Grateful for the country’s blessings, COAS Munir remarked, “Allah has bestowed Pakistan with numerous gifts. Drawing attention to Pakistan’s potential for progress, the army chief asserted, “No external force can hinder our journey towards advancement.” He reaffirmed his belief in the nation’s capability to achieve greatness in all domains. Through strategic planning, innovative thinking, and a focus on inclusivity, Gen. Asim laid the foundation for a strong and resilient economy. The initiatives he championed in infrastructure, energy, agriculture, education, and technology have positively impacted various sectors, leading to increased investment, job creation, and improved living standards. Even General Asim Munir is also discussed in India for economic stability. On the special instructions of the Army Chief, the Pakistan Army along with the domestic agencies have brought down the prices of petroleum and other goods and the public got great relief from the crackdown against the mafia. General Asim Munir also plays an important role in relations with friendly countries and foreign affairs. During the year, several important foreign routes were also completed, while the implementation of the National Action Plan was ensured. Under the leadership of General Asim, Pakistan inked several Memorandum of Understanding (MoUs) with different countries, paving the way for multi-billion dollar investments in diverse initiatives outlined by the Special Investment Facilitation Council (SIFC). The MoUs cover investment cooperation across various sectors, including energy, port operations, wastewater treatment, food security, logistics, mining, aviation, and banking and financial services. These MoUs will unlock multi-billion dollars of investment into Pakistan and will help realize various initiatives envisioned under the Special Investment Facilitation Council (SIFC).

The Chief of Army Staff, Gen Asim Munir, vowed to extend all our support to the Government of Pakistan for the ‘ Green Pakistan Initiative’ and bringing about Agriculture reforms. Again the personal presence and speech by the COAS at the ‘Dust to Development’ summit also signaled that the dust is settling down and development is coming. The messages were very clear that we must never lose hope. General Asim Munir’s Vision for Development and Economic Prosperity of Pakistan is based on our social responsibility to play our collective role in the country’s economy. Munir is a former chief of Pakistan’s powerful intelligence service, the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), and before that the head of the country’s military intelligence. In nuclear-armed Pakistan, with the world’s fifth largest military and a history of military rule, the army chief tends to be the most powerful leader — at times even perceived as the de facto leader due to significant influence over Pakistan’s domestic and foreign policies. Gen. Munir took charge amid continued political and economic turmoil in Pakistan. Civil-military relations had been greatly tarnished under Bajwa’s six-year tenure. Gen. Munir restored the military’s image from criticism to praise and restored its public image. In the pursuit of a progressive and prosperous Pakistan, visionary leaders have always played a pivotal role in shaping the nation’s destiny. One such influential figure is General Asim Munir, whose initiatives for development and economic growth have left a profound impact on the country. As a seasoned military leader and strategist, General Munir brought fresh perspectives to governance, emphasizing the importance of a strong economy, innovation, and inclusive development. This article delves into the initiatives undertaken by General Asim Munir and their impact on Pakistan’s journey towards economic prosperity. The COAS made four key points. First, the formation of the Special Investment Facilitation Council (SIFC) to bring all stakeholders to one platform for investors was the result of collaboration between the government and state institutions. Secondly, the SIFC has laid down new rules for the ease of doing business. Thirdly, and importantly, what was not clear before has now been clarified. These rules are for domestic as well as foreign investors. Any discrimination against domestic investors does not go well with foreign investors. Fourthly, the investor-friendly system will provide easy terms and conditions for business. 

Let it be clear that the proof of the pudding will be in the eating. General Asim Munir recognized the fundamental importance of well-developed infrastructure for the nation’s growth and connectivity. Removing the hurdles in the progress of work of China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) was one of General Munir’s landmark achievements. This game-changing initiative brought significant foreign investment, improving Pakistan’s connectivity with China and Central Asia. The Gwadar Port, a vital component of the CPEC, has also emerged again as a strategic hub for international trade, opening up new avenues for economic growth and regional integration. This initiative not only reduced regional disparities but also facilitated the transportation of goods, boosting economic activity and trade across the country. Addressing Pakistan’s chronic energy crisis was a top priority for General Munir. He spearheaded initiatives to diversify the energy mix by investing in renewable sources such as solar, wind, and hydropower. These efforts aimed to reduce the country’s dependency on fossil fuels and enhance energy security while promoting sustainable development. General Munir took decisive action to address this challenge by promoting a diversified and sustainable energy mix. His support encouraged investment in renewable energy sources, leading to a surge in solar and wind power projects across the country. Through incentives and policy reforms, Pakistan witnessed a considerable increase in private sector participation in the energy sector, enhancing energy security and reducing dependency on costly fossil fuels. Agriculture remains the backbone of Pakistan’s economy, and General Munir recognized its significance in ensuring food security and alleviating poverty. Through the ‘Green Pakistan Initiative’ and bringing about Agriculture reforms, his initiatives focused on modernizing the agriculture sector by introducing advanced farming techniques, promoting research and development, and ensuring the efficient utilization of water resources through better irrigation practices. 

General Asim Munir’s initiatives for the development and economic prosperity of Pakistan have been instrumental in shaping the nation’s path towards progress.  

General Munir understood the vital role of human capital in the country’s progress. To promote economic prosperity, he emphasized investing in education and skill development programs. This included revamping the education system, establishing technical and vocational training centers, and encouraging research and innovation. By nurturing a skilled and knowledgeable workforce, General Munir aimed to drive economic growth and create a competitive advantage in the global market. He encouraged collaborations between academia and the private sector, leading to the emergence of research-driven industries and startups. General Munir recognized that embracing innovation and technology was crucial for Pakistan’s economic development in the 21st century. General Asim Munir believed in building strong ties with the international community to attract foreign direct investment (FDI) and boost trade opportunities. He worked towards creating a conducive business environment, simplifying regulations, and offering competitive incentives to attract multinational companies and foreign investors. Through increased global engagement, Pakistan gained access to new markets and technologies, fostering economic growth and job creation. He encouraged investor-friendly policies, making it easier for foreign companies to set up businesses in Pakistan. By establishing a transparent and business-friendly regulatory environment, General Munir aimed to boost investor confidence and increase FDI inflows. Under his leadership, Pakistan negotiated free trade agreements with various countries and regional blocs to enhance market access for Pakistani products and services. These agreements not only opened up the way for new export opportunities but also encouraged foreign investment in export-oriented industries. In his pursuit of economic prosperity, General Munir did not overlook the importance of mineral development environmental conservation, and sustainable development. He actively promoted initiatives of mineral development, and to mitigate the impacts of climate change, preserve biodiversity, and protect natural resources. Emphasis was placed on adopting green technologies, promoting renewable energy, and implementing eco-friendly policies to ensure a sustainable and resilient economy for future generations. The action started by stopping the illegal movement of essential commodities from the country began to bear fruit, the dollar’s value continued to decline, where the decline in the value of the dollar led to a decline in the prices of other commodities, the stock exchange broke upward records in the history of the country. Pakistan is passing through one of her most critical junctures and this requires the development of national consensus by all stakeholders to sail through the challenges of the economy and terrorism. Chief of the Army Staff General Syed Asim Munir reiterated Pakistan has to progress and that no power in the world can stop the country from its journey on the road to progress, and to make Pakistan green again as Allah almighty has blessed the country with various resources. In the long term, the economy may prove to be the stiffer challenge because it is not so amenable to military control as politics and internal security. The difficulty is compounded by Pakistan’s fraught foreign relations, as the government can no longer automatically count on largesse from its allies in the United States and the Middle East, who in the waning years of the Cold War and immediately afterward allowed the country to service its debt and stay afloat as a rentier state. Boosting exports could be a starter, but Pakistan still hopes the U.S., China, and other international partners will step in to help it avoid defaulting on international loans. COAS Munir hailed the government’s plans for uplift, expressing his confidence in the transformation of the different sectors in the landscape of Pakistan. Under his leadership, Pakistan will witness a development and economic revolution. General Asim Munir called on all the stakeholders to develop a national consensus to confront challenges posed by the economy and terrorism. Pakistan Army takes pride in serving its nation, with dedication to the welfare of the people and the country. The army belonged to the people, and the people belonged to the army, emphasizing the strong bond between the armed forces and the civilians. As Pakistan looks to the future, Gen Munir’s contributions are poised to set a challenging target and leave a lasting legacy. General Asim Munir’s initiatives for the development and economic prosperity of Pakistan have been instrumental in shaping the nation’s path towards progress.  As Pakistan continues to build upon the legacy of General Munir’s vision, it moves towards a more prosperous and promising future.

By admin

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