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Asad Umar Says Centre Funding 62% of Rs1,100bn Karachi Transformation Package

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ISLAMABAD– Minister for Planning, Development and Special Initiatives Asad Umar Sunday made it clear that the federal government is funding 62 percent of total package of Rs1,100 billion Karachi Transformation Package announced by Prime Minister Imran Khan.

The premier announced the massive package after a meeting with Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah, Governor Imran Ismail and provincial MPAs but did not give a breakdown of the contributions.

Bilawal on package

Later in the day, PPP Chairperson Bilawal Bhutto Zardari claimed that the province was funding Rs800 billion of the total Rs1,100 billion. On Sunday, Umar held a press conference where he refuted this claims.

He said the federal government was funding 62% of the package, while the Sindh government was funding 38% of it. We didn’t want to take away from the spirit of Karachi Transformation package by announcing who’s paying what, said Umar. However, he said the PPP chairperson’s statement compelled him to hold the press conference to clear up any misunderstandings sooner rather than later.

CM Shah never raised any issues and we have no problems with anything he said, announced Umar. “He should convey that to his party chief.”

Asad defends

Anyone working with us should know, we don’t say anything behind closed doors that we won’t say in front of a TV camera, warned Umar.

He said they would have no issue if the Sindh government wanted to pay Rs800 billion for the package. But we didn’t and don’t want to say we’re paying more than the provincial government or anything like that, he said.

If this package is successful, it will not be because we found new projects, new modes of funding or set up monitoring committees, said the minister. “It will only be successful if Pakistan’s various institutions and governments accept that Pakistan cannot prosper the way we all want it to unless something is done for the country’s biggest city, its financial centre and the city that gives it the most revenue,” he said.