By Muhammad Irfan
Chief Minister Punjab Chaudhry Parvez Elahi and former federal minister Moonis Elahi met with US Consul General Mr. William K.
MNA Hussain Elahi, CS Abdullah Khan Sumbal, former Principal Secretary to CM GM Sikandar, Secretary P&D and other officials were also present on the occasion.
The US Consul General lauded CM Parvez Elahi’s steps being taken to establish new districts in Punjab. He welcomed the important development with regard to the agreement being made to declare USA State California and Punjab as sister states, adding that this agreement would be signed soon. He said the agreement would enhance trade, economic and business relations between Punjab and California, adding that bilateral investment would also increase between Punjab and California.
The Chief Minister stated that relations in education, health, IT, environment and culture sectors would be promoted. This agreement would further augment bilateral relations between Punjab and California, the CM said and apprised that a special cell had been established in the P&D board and a steering committee had been chalked out.
CM Parvez Elahi thanked America for extending their financial assistance for the flood affectees. He revealed, “Our government is building houses for the flood affectees and handing them over as well.” The losses incurred to the livestock and fields had also been redressed, he said and added that the flood affectees were being provided free solar tube wells and development projects were ongoing in Punjab.
He said, “Punjab is a most suitable province with regard to investment. We have formulated a policy to give on lease uncultivated land on 30 years period.” The Chief Minister stated that the investors would be given this land free of cost and the investors could benefit from this facility. Four new districts had been established in Punjab in order to devolve authority at the grassroots level, the CM said, adding that not only employment opportunities had been generated in these new districts but the problems of the masses were also being resolved at their doorsteps. New districts had been established by keeping in mind the needs of the masses.
He said new industrial zones had been set up in Punjab and one window operation had been launched for the investors in these new industrial zones. He said, “Our government has launched an elevated expressway project in Lahore and the citizens will have easy access to the motorway with the completion of this project.” He said, “Pakistan is a peaceful country and we want cordial relations with our neighbouring countries.” All citizens including minorities had equal right according to the constitution in Pakistan, the CM concluded.
The US Consul General stated, “We will further enhance cooperation with the Punjab government in various sectors.”The Political and Economic Chief of US Consulate Ms Kathleen Gibilisco and Political Specialist Sadaf Saad were also present on this occasion.