Karachi does not belong to MQM, says Asad Umar
KARACHI: Karachi did not “belong” to the Mutumiida Qaumi-Pakistan Movement (MQM-P), but to Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf, which won more votes from the port city in the elections two years ago, the Minister of Planning and Development Assad Umar said Friday.
Speaking to the media, the federal minister said: “We [the PTI] they are working for the people of Karachi, with the MQM-P as a partner. “
“Both the PTI and the MQM-P are fighting for development projects in Karachi and the harsh reality is that what megacity deserves is not being given,” he said.
Umar had previously claimed that progress had been made in the talks after a previous meeting with the leaders of the MQM-P. The ruling PTI is making continuous efforts to persuade the unhappy party based in Karachi to return to the federal cabinet; The latter had announced in January that he would resign for “broken promises.”
The minister, whose previous portfolio was the Ministry of Finance, also said he had met with officials of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) during his visit to Karachi. They “emphasized fully utilizing the federal development budget,” he said.
Responding to a question about fear of the coronavirus, Umar said it was too early to comment on its impact on the pace of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), with the country’s consul general in Lahore, Long Dingbin, saying Geo.tv one day before the two friendly nations were tackling the epidemic.
Dingbin’s comments were similar to those of Prime Minister Imran Khan’s trade advisor, Abdul Razak Dawood, in an interview on February 4 with News.
Dawood had said he saw no impact on trade with China under the Phase II Free Trade Agreement (FTA-II). He added that the new business-to-business interaction for a new trade with Chinese entrepreneurs could be affected, but it would also be short-lived since the Chinese were workaholics and could soon overcome the coronavirus situation.