LAHORE – Turkish government and Exim Bank have assured Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif of cooperation and investment in energy and other development sectors in Punjab province.

During his visit to Turkey, Punjab CM called on Turkish Energy Minister Taner Yildiz and Chief Executive Officer of Exim Bank Hayrettin Kaplan, separately in Ankara on Friday. In his meeting with Taner Yildiz, negotiations were held regarding joint ventures in energy sector in Punjab and cooperation in finding alternative sources of power generation.

Talking on the occasion, Shahbaz Sharif said that energy crisis has adversely impacted Pakistan’s economic, industrial and agriculture sectors and every segment of the society has badly been affected by loadshedding. He said that Punjab government has created a conducive atmosphere for investment for foreign investors in the province and special incentives and facilities are being extended to them particularly. He said Turkish companies can benefit from investment opportunities in Punjab generally and in the energy sector particularly.

While highlighting the importance of cooperation of Turkish government and companies, he said, they would go long way to overcome energy crisis in Pakistan. Taner Yildiz appreciated the policies and hard work of Punjab Chief Minister for progress and prosperity of the province and assured that Turkish government would extend all possible help to the Punjab government to meet its energy needs. He said that Turkish companies are keen to invest in energy sector in Punjab. He informed that an energy road show for Punjab would be held in Turkey in the third week of October which will be participated by all energy-related companies of Turkey. The Chief Minister welcomed the announcement of holding energy road show and especially thanked Turkish Energy Minister.

Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Exim Bank Hayrettin Kaplan held detailed exchange of views with the Punjab Chief Minister for exploring various investment opportunities in different sectors of Punjab, besides cooperation in project financing. Exim Bank also expressed its willingness to amend rules for project financing in Punjab.

The Chief Minister said that the Punjab government is thankful to the Exim Bank for enhancing the country limit of project financing from $100-250 million along with waiving conditionality of sovereign guarantee on his request. He said Exim Bank can extend cooperation for investment in energy, construction and public transport sectors. The Chief Minister appointed Secretary Finance Punjab Tariq Bajwa as focal person for discussing project financing with Exam Bank along with finalising other matters.

Speaking on the occasion, Hayrettin Kaplan said that Exim Bank would make necessary changes in its rules in accordance with the needs of Punjab for project financing in the province.

He said that the needs of financing required for different projects in Punjab would be met on priority basis.

He highly appreciated the steps taken by the Punjab Chief Minister for the welfare and prosperity of the people of Punjab.