ISLAMABAD Pakistan on Sunday urged the international community to waive its debt of over $50 billion to ease the financial burden on the country and enable it to combat terrorism and other challenges. The country has paid a heavy price after becoming part of the war on terror in 2001, Interior Minister Rehman Malik said at the inauguration of the two-day Pakistan Development Forum. The waived-off foreign debt will be utilised in the fight against terrorism, he said adding: We need trade instead of aid. Malik further said, Terrorism in Pakistan is being exported from Afghanistan as around 50,000 people crossover daily to the Pakistani side from the porous borders with Afghanistan. During the meeting, the government side urged the international community to assist Pakistan for a consistent development as it wanted to turn the calamity into an opportunity through reconstruction in the flood-hit areas. Finance Minister Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh and Punjabs Senior Advisor Zulfiqar Ali Khosa jointly chaired the PDF meeting. In his inaugural speech, the Finance Minister said, The Government wants to turn the calamity into an opportunity through reconstruction of the flood-hit areas of the country. Pakistan has entered a transitional phase as more resources are allocated to the provinces for the development of the people through the 18th Amendment and the NFC Award, as resources are being transferred to the provinces from the Centre, he added. He said, The Government wants to expedite economic development and reduce poverty but the recent floods and the ongoing war against terrorism have left us handicapped. US Special Envoy for Afghanistan and Pakistan Richard Holbrooke on the occasion assured that the US would help Pakistan in every circumstance. I will announce some package for Pakistan tomorrow (Monday), he added. He further said that they would help in eliminating poverty in Pakistan. It is worth mentioning that the World Bank and Asian Development Bank in their report on Disaster Need Assessment have stated that Pakistan suffered $10.5 billion loss due to the recent floods. According to the report $6.70 billion would be needed for the reconstruction. For the construction of houses, $1.4 billion, communication and transport, $2.3 billion, irrigation, $420 million, agriculture $250 million, education $500 million, health, $40 million, environment, $200 million, and for drinking water, $70 million would be required. The report was also discussed in the meeting of Pakistan Development Forum. Earlier in the morning session, Zulfiqar Khosa said that recent flood caused $3.20 billion loss to Punjab. Only agriculture sector faced Rs 80 billion loss due to the natural disaster. However, he informed, the Government of Punjab is committed to construct model villages for the flood affectees for which it needs $900 million. No government is in a position to undertake reconstruction and rehabilitation work alone, he said. There should be transparent and accountability system in the country, he suggested. He further informed that the province was bettering taxing system of agricultural income, adding the property tax system was improved a lot. Our Government has curtailed the current expenditures by Rs 30 billion, he added. While replying a question regarding generating additional resources, Senator Ishaq Dar said the province had tremendous crops and the Government was working on a mechanism to impose agriculture tax. Sindh Chief Minister Qaim Ali Shah informed the participants of the meeting that his province suffered $4.28 billion loss due to the floods, while more than Rs 200 billion were required for the reconstruction. The Government is planning to impose one-time flood surcharge, which would help generate Rs 27 billion to assist one million flood affectees. Talking about flood tax, he said, We will try to make consensus with coalition and opposition parties of the province. He said no aid was demanded from donor countries, but all should invest in various developmental projects in flood-affected areas and the Sindh Government had assured them all incentives in this regard. Advisor to Sindh CM Qaiser Bengali said the province had set up Sindh Revenue Board to collect GST on Services from which more than Rs 12 billion were estimated to be collected during the current financial year. Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Governor Owais Ghani said his province needed Rs 107 billion during the next 18 months for reconstruction of the flood-hit areas of the province. He further added that Rs 66 billion were required for social sector while Rs 41 billion were needed for infrastructure. He said that the Government wanted to promote education, health and employment in tribal areas and a plan was developed to set up at least one urban centre in every tribal agency. Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister Ameer Haider Khan Hoti said that not only floods but the war on terror also destroyed the provincial economy and there were a lot of opportunities for investment. He said that his Government reallocated Rs 18 billion from its funds for the flood-hit areas. Balochistan Chief Minister Nawab Aslam Raisani informed the participants of the meeting that the province faced Rs 53 billion losses. He said that his Government cut Rs 4.2 billion from the budget for the flood affectees. The backwardness of province could be removed through exploration of natural resources, RGST and other taxation measures, he added. Raisani said that the Government planned to generate additional resources by increasing royalties on mineral resources, broadening base of property tax and implementation of RGST on services. Additional Chief Secretary FATA Habibullah Khan told that short and medium-term development projects worth $2 billion would be commenced during the next nine years. Prime Minister of Azad Jummu and Kashmir Sardar Attique Khan said that they had the potential to produce 18,000 MW of electricity, which could be exported to Pakistan as well as to the Indian Occupied Kashmir. He invited foreign investors as the Government had authority to allow setting up of 100 MW power plants. Interior Minister Rehman Malik warned the global community if it failed to assist Pakistan in its war against terrorism, the entire world could become its victim. He was of the view that Pakistan faced billions of dollars loss in the war against terror. He further said that world should realise that this war was being fought to protect it from the ravages of terrorism and global peace, as the war was not only to save Pakistan but it was for the safety of the entire world. He stressed upon the global community to address its ethical and moral obligations by assisting Pakistan. Those who cannot fulfil their obligations have no right to insist on 'do more mantra, he declared. The Minister also reminded that a safe Pakistan and Afghanistan were passport to global peace and harmony, and both these South-Asian countries should be economically strengthened. Delegations from 30 countries and 264 representatives from donor countries, five major lending and aid institutions are participating at the forum. The conference would conclude today (Monday).