PESHAWAR: In a bid to overcome the socio-economic fallout caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, Chief Minister Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Mahmood Khan has formally launched a three-year economic recovery plan “Azm-e-Nau” (The Spirit of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa) here on Thursday. The plan will be implemented with the total cost of Rs.29 billion through 43 interventions in 9 key development sectors which included: economic growth, education, emergency response, health, organizing geographically spread and reachable jobs for development, public works, small & medium enterprises and social protection. Chief Minister has termed this economic recovery plan a continuation of the efforts to stabilize the economy affected by the COVID-19 outbreak and said that he will himself monitor the implementation of this plan. An event in this regard having limited number of participants due to COVID-19 precautionary measures held at Chief Minister Secretariat Peshawar and was attended by Provincial Minister for Finance Taimur Saleem Jhagra, Special Assistant to CM on Information Kamran Bangash, Special Assistant to CM on PHE Riaz Khan, Additional Chief Secretary Shakeel Qadir, administrative secretaries of concerned departments and high ups of planning & development department. Representatives from international development partners also participated through video link. The participants were briefed about the impacts of COVID-19 on economy in South Asia, anticipated impacts on vulnerable employments, objectives and salient features of the plan “Azm-e-Nau”, augmented implementation mechanism, roles and responsibilities for the plan and other related matters. It was informed that apart from dealing with the short term aspects of crisis management, “Azm-e-Nau” economic recovery plan has been prepared to avert the economic fallout caused by the Corona pandemic through implementation of public sector interventions in expeditious manners. In his closing remarks, the chief minister said that provincial government has taken unprecedented steps to contain the spread of COVID-19 as well as to address the issues faced by the people due to current situation of pandemic. “Launch of Azm-e-Nau plan is also a continuation of these efforts and that will prove to be a milestone in strengthening of healthcare system, compensating the economic losses incurred during the prevailing situation of Corona virus and to mitigate overall adverse effects of pandemic on provincial economy, reinforce stimuli and short to medium term liquidity for the revival of businesses grappling with the supply side shock”, he added. The chief minister lauded the efforts of his team at Planning & Development department for the preparation of comprehensive economic recovery plan in such a short time frame and said through joint efforts we will be able to put the economy of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa back on track.
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