Once again, the raging bull of Pakistani economy is in debates. This time, initiated after a “Chicken Economy” statement from the PM of Pakistan.
The Prime Minister in a speech claimed to change the fate of this flawed economy by giving a couple of hen to the locals, which in return will lay eggs and add to the economy. No one is questioning the intentions of the Prime minister to address economic issues. The problem, however, is about feasibility; would these policies really work?
The PTI supporters defended the PM’s statement claiming they were about grass-root empowerment for the rural population. But the critics of the PTI government maintained that Imran Khan has knack for making childish statements and has done no homework before taking charge of the federation.
Shahbaz Sharif too opted the policy that provided a pair of cows and hens to the rural population at sub-tehsil level. The policy got materialized, too. But it never caught the eye of mainstream media, because it was never discussed at national level.
Imran Khan made such comments in font of national media, which got highlighted by international media, too. The privileged don’t want to listen to sub-tehseel level policies at national level. It was mocked, despite the policy having some standing. Brazil, once an impoverished and underdeveloped country, is now the world’s largest beef exporter, an industry worth 20.48 million USD and employing thousands in the sector. Furthermore Imran Khan did not take the criticism lightly, he shot back at the critics with this tweet:
For the colonised minds when desis talk about chickens combating poverty they get mocked, but when "walaitis" talk about desi chicken and poverty it's brilliance! https://t.co/bjvQQIVoRv
— Imran Khan (@ImranKhanPTI) December 1, 2018
The idea of uplifting rural population’s life is inherently a good idea, but to tackle the raging bull of economy, it is important to take the bull by horns. Such policies will undoubtedly help some part of the population, but will not improve national balance of payment or the international loans Pakistan is sinking into. Pakistan’s economy is structurally flawed; serious structural changes are needed to get it going. Instead of raising taxes on consumer goods such as petrol and food items to increase national revenue, the government needs to seriously focus on tax collection. This needs to be done beyond cosmetics of showing that the government is bringing back overseas assets of millionaires and also implemented for the plethora of people who just don pay their taxes.
Contributor: Muneeb Khan