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National

June 13, 2018

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PM directs for making effective policy to meet water issues

Saudi envoy calls on premier; performance of health ministry lauded

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By Muhammad Saleh Zaafir

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Nasirul Mulk has directed Ministry of Water Resources to work out a comprehensive plan for addressing water related issues of the country. He chaired a briefing on water resources at the PMO where Minister for Water Resources Barrister Syed Ali Zafar, Secretary to Prime Minister Suhail Aamir, Secretary Water Resources Shamail Ahmed Khawaja, Chairman Federal Flood Commission Ahmed Kamal and senior officers were also present and took part in the discussion. Secretary Water Resources made a presentation on water resource availability, its utilisation and various issues impacting on the effectivemanagement of surface as well as ground water resources. The secretary also briefed the prime minister about key policy objectives and strategic priorities that have been included in the National Water Policy 2018. The meeting was informed that the availability of water in the country was gradually improvingwith the rising temperature and melting of the glacial snow in the mountains. The premier appreciated formulation of the first-ever National Water Policy and setting up of strategic priorities for the future. Underscoring the need for putting in place an efficient water resource management system, the prime minister observed that leveraging technology and adoption of efficient means of conservation and utilisation was essential to ensure availability ofwater for a rapidly increasing population. Ambassador of Saudi Arabia Nawaf Saeed bin Al-Malkiy also hadmeetingwith the primeminister at the PMO. The Saudi ambassador conveyed greetings of the Saudi leadership to the prime minister and felicitated him on assuming the office. Both the sides reiterated close fraternal ties between Pakistan and Saudi Arabia and the need to enhance bilateral economic relations with focus on trade and investment. Ambassador Al-Malkiy said there were excellent opportunities for Saudi businessmen to invest in Pakistan. The Commercial Section in the Saudi Embassy was therefore actively working to promote commercial relations between the two brotherly countries. The prime minister emphasised his government’s commitment to further strengthen the cooperative relations with the Saudi Arabia in all areas of mutual interest. The PM also briefed the ambassador on the electoral process in Pakistan with the objective to hold free and fair elections in July followed by the formation of the new government in August. The ambassador conveyed his best wishes for the future and peace, progress and prosperity of Pakistan. Meanwhile, Prime Minister Nasirul Mulk chaired a briefing on the performance of Ministry of National Health Services, Regulations and Coordination at PrimeMinister’s Office.Minister for NHS&R Muhammad Yusuf Sheikh, secretary to Prime Minister, secretary NHS&R, DG Health and senior officers were present on the occasion. The secretary National Health Services (NHS) briefed the prime minister about the regulatory functions of the ministry, especially in the wake of 18th Amendment of the Constitution, in important areas such as drugs and biological,medical education, disease surveillance, stakeholders’ consultations, research in health related issues and serving as a repository for global commitments of the country. He also highlighted the role of various attached departments of the ministry and their contribution towards performing regulatory and coordination functions, policy formulation process and undertaking research work at the national level. The prime minister appreciated the performance of the ministry and emphasised the importance of coordination among the federal and provincial governments to ensure provision of quality health services and improved health outcomes. He also added that efforts shall be made to enhance the scope and quality of health services being provided to the general public.

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