ISLAMABAD  - Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Information and Broadcasting Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan said Tuesday the federal cabinet formally approved the Asset Declaration Bill, which will be enforced after getting President’s assent.

In her media briefing on decisions taken by the federal cabinet, she said that cabinet was informed that billions of rupees were spent in international litigations from national exchequer that increased from 6 in 2016 to 45 this year.

She said 100 million dollars as fee has been paid during the last five years while 10 million dollars are to be paid this month in international legal fees.

Special Assistant on Information said Prime Minister Imran Khan directed Attorney General of Pakistan that all ministries should carefully do their homework before signing international agreements in order to avoid legal troubles.

Dr Firdous said Prime Minister Khan also directed to evolve a long term policy in coordination with provinces to control inflation in the country.

She said the cabinet approved taking measures for the facilitation of Pakistani citizens detained abroad on various charges.

She said the prime minister directed to bring back Pakistani citizens from Malaysia after arranging required funding for that purpose.

Firdous said the cabinet also directed establishment of low-priced bazaars and availability of essential items at Utility Stores to facilitate common people during Ramadan.

She said the cabinet also approved appointment of Major General Umar Ahmed Bukhari as Director General of Rangers, Sindh.

The federal cabinet also approved the appointment of Minister of State for Overseas Pakistanis Zulfi Bukhari as the chairman of the Pakistan Tourism Development Corporation (PTDC), the Ministry of Overseas Pakistanis and Human Resource Development announced via a tweet. The cabinet’s decision was endorsed by the PTDC board, the tweet further said.

The Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) government has laid emphasis on promoting tourism in Pakistan and has taken multiple steps to facilitate travellers. Last year, the government relaxed the visa policy and announced the offering of online visas to visitors from 175 countries.

The government has also taken steps to promote religious tourism. Prime Minister Imran Khan last year laid the foundation stone of the Kartarpur crossing that would facilitate Indian Sikh pilgrims to visit holy sites in Pakistan.

The premier has stressed on the importance of proper infrastructure to facilitate tourists.

Meanwhile, Dr Firdous Tuesday called on President Dr Arif Alvi and discussed matters related to the media and its significant role in addressing national and social issues. She said she was entrusted by the president with the responsibility to resolve the problems being faced by the media.

Later, talking to official media, Dr Firdous said overall challenges of society and resolution of issues of downtrodden segments were also discussed during the meeting. She said the president had a vision about the progress and prosperity of the country and they also discussed image building of Pakistan.

The special assistant said transfer of powers at the grassroots level was also discussed during the meeting. She said the social media had a great role in countering challenges of the society and it was government’s mission to empower the media and link it with the interests of the country. Digitalization of media and equip it with latest technology were also discussed during the meeting, she said.