Investment and Economic Outlook for Pakistan
August 14, 2015: 6:00 PM - 8:30 PM
The Pakistan Club hosts an outlook on Pakistan's investment climate and government policies with Mohsin Chandna, MPP '09, who's the economic minister of the embassy of Pakistan.
Saieh Hall for Economics
5757 S. University Avenue
Ample street parking is typically available after hours.
Pakistan Economy has witnessed a remarkable turnaround during last two years. In June 2013 with huge IMF repayments looming large, Circular debt piling up and FDI at the lowest level, the country was at the brink of default. The Government, however, took tough decisions and started reform process which paved the way for IMF Program that averted immediate crisis. Since then Pakistan economy has come a long way and a strong foundation for a higher growth trajectory has been laid.
A comparison of indicators over last 2 years prove this turn around. The Foreign Exchange Reserves have more than doubled from $6 billion to $13 billion. Inflation has been reduced from 8.5% to 4% which is lowest in 2 decades. The Discount Rate has been reduced from 10% in June 13' to 7% in May 15' which is also lowest in last 30 years. Fiscal Deficit has been brought down from 8% to around 4.5% and Current Account Deficit has been brought down to under 1% of GDP. Karachi Stock Exchange has crossed 35,000 mark for the first time in its history. Lastly for the first time remittances have surpassed $18 billion mark.
The government has remained firmly on track with the IMF program and had a successful 7th review on June 26, 2015 which was cleared without a waiver. The above mentioned successes notwithstanding, the Government continues to deal with energy challenges and security issues that have hindered fast-paced recovery. While economic growth forecasts improvement and Discount Rates support private investment, the lukewarm response of local investors is keeping foreign investment away. It is indeed worrisome that Pakistan has lowest Foreign Direct Investment rate in the region.
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Mohsin M. Chandna, PP 2009 (Speaker) '09
Economic Minister, Pakistan Embassy
An officer of Pakistan Administrator Service with blend of experience in Government service as well as Development Sector. He has worked for the Government of Pakistan for over twenty five years while he has also worked for USAID in Pakistan for over a year. He holds a degree in Masters of Public Policy from University of Chicago as well as Masters in Business Administration from Institute of Business Administration (IBA) Karachi, Pakistan, which is the oldest business school outside North America.
He has worked as Secretary Planning at the Government of Sindh. He has taught twelve courses of Microeconomics, Macroeconomics and Issues in Pakistan Economy to MBA students at IBA Karachi. He is a Bridge player of international repute and earned the rank of Silver Life Master from American Contract Bridge League. In the month of February he won the Annual William Poissant Bridge Trophy held by Northern Virginia Bridge Association.
Since 2012, he has been serving as an Economic Minister for the Embassy of Pakistan in Washington DC. He is married and lives with his wife and three children in Washington DC.
K. Rizwan Kadir, MBA '97, '97
The Pakistan Club, now in its 12th year, started out as an alumni organization at Chicago Booth. Over the years, we partnered with other divisions for our activities to emerge as the voice of Pakistan and its advocate.
Our membership consists of current students, alumni, and faculty from different Divisions of the University. We have conducted admissions sessions, high-profile presentations by senior corporate executives, policy makers, and academics (including a Nobel economist). We also hosted a highly successful investment conference about Pakistan and another one about the the Silk Road countries.