LAHORE: The World Bank and the Punjab government on Monday agreed to promote cooperation in education, health, agriculture, irrigation and other sectors.

The agreement in this regard was reached during a meeting of World Bank delegation headed by its Country Director in Pakistan Patchamutha Illango and Punjab Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif here.

Talking to the delegation, Shehbaz Sharif said that the programmes with the cooperation of World Bank for the uplift of social sectors of Punjab were running successfully. He said that special attention was being paid to making youth skillful according to the market demands.

He said the Punjab government had introduced basic reforms in education, health and other social sectors. Special attention was being paid to provide best services to the masses, he added.

The Chief Minister said work was continuing speedily on various projects for overcoming shortage of energy. Thousands of megawatt electricity would be generated with the completion of energy projects by the end of 2017, which would increase the economic growth rate, he added.

Shehbaz Sharif said that the cooperation of World Bank would be welcomed in the skill development sector.

He said the Punjab government had fixed the target of increasing growth rate of 8 per cent by 2018 and no effort would be spared for achieving this target.

The Country Director World Bank, speaking on the occasion, said that they were greatly impressed with the vision of Shehbaz Sharif for the uplift of social sectors. He said that the collaboration with the Punjab government would further be increased in social sectors. He said that the cooperation with the Punjab government regarding skill development would also be considered.

Meanwhile, Railways Minster Khawaja Saad Rafique called on Punjab Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif and discussed issues and matters pertaining to power projects.

Shehbaz Sharif reaffirmed commitment to overcome electricity load shedding by 2018.

The Chief Minister said all resources including gas, coal, solar and wind were being utilized to complete various power generation projects.

He said the government was determined under the leadership of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to complete energy projects.