ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Mian Nawaz Sharif has announced launching of six schemes for welfare of youth with initial allocations of twenty billion rupees.
In his address to the nation on Saturday evening‚ PM Nawaz Sharif said these programmes are aimed at creating self-employment opportunities for youth and are in fulfilment of its election manifesto.
He said the micro-interest free loan scheme is targeted at disadvantaged sections of the society and will benefit two hundred and fifty thousand people. An allocation of 3.5 billion rupees has been made during the current financial year.
The Small Business Loan Scheme has been designed for unemployed‚ especially educated youth to enable them to start their own businesses. Under the scheme loans ranging from five hundred thousand to two million rupees would be advanced to youth at concessionary mark up rate of eight percent and the remaining burden of the mark up would be borne by the government. Fifty percent loans would be given to women and initially these loans would be advanced by National Bank of Pakistan and First Women Bank. Five billion rupees have been allocated for the scheme.
Nawaz stated under Youth Training Scheme those completing sixteen year degree education from recognized institutions would be given practical training to help them secure job at home or abroad. For this on the job training ten thousand rupees scholarship per month would be given for one year and fifty thousand graduates would benefit from the scheme. Four billion rupees have been earmarked for this scheme.
The Youth Skilled Development Scheme is being launched for boys and girls who have passed 8th class. They will be given six months training in different trades along with scholarship of five thousand rupees a month. The government has earmarked eight hundred million rupees for the scheme.
Mian Nawaz Sharif also announced a scheme for sponsoring tuition fee of students belonging to backward areas so that brilliant students are not deprived of their right to education due to financial constraints. The government would pay at an average forty thousand rupees annual fee on behalf of each of the thirty thousand students for MA‚ M.Sc and higher level education. This scheme is being launched at a cost of 1.2 billion rupees.
The PM said four billion rupees have been earmarked for Prime Minister s scheme for Provision of Laptops. Under the scheme one hundred thousand students would be provided laptops this year by the Federal Government.
Nawaz said the Federal Cabinet has already approved basic structure of these schemes and arrangements have also been completed for their implementation. He however invited suggestions from people to make these schemes more transparent and hundred percent merit based.
Details of these schemes would be available on the website www.pmo.gov.pk from Monday and people can give their comments on the website. Suggestions can also be sent in writing to the Prime Minister s office in Islamabad.
COMPLETE TEXT OF PM NAWAZ SHARIF’S ADDRESS TO THE NATION
“My dear elders‚ brothers‚ sisters and the youngsters who hold the key to the future.
I am not here today with a long speech‚ but I will briefly state some of the initiatives which had been promised in our manifesto‚ and I had been mentioning during the election campaign.
Today we are beginning a journey for the fulfilment of promises; this is the first step in a long journey. With the passage of time‚ these steps will not only be enhanced but we will allocate more and more resources towards their fulfilment.
This government aims to immediately resolve all issues confronting Pakistan‚ so that the economy would be strengthened in such a manner that we shall not require any foreign assistance.
Billions of rupees could be saved each year‚ which are spent on the government institutions functioning in deficit. This amount could be utilized on the schemes for the welfare of common man‚ education and training of youth and creating new opportunities for the youngsters.
As I have told before‚ that every year we spend approximately Rupees 500 billion on the government institutions which are run in losses. These 500 billion‚ if available to the government‚ can be utilized on such financial initiatives‚ that could bring a revolution in the lives of underprivileged classes and youngsters.
Although we face a shortage of resources and financial difficulties‚ we are fulfilling our promises and initiating programmes though not revolutionary ‚ but they will open new avenues for the welfare of underprivileged segments and youngsters.
The main idea of these initiatives is to provide financial opportunities for making these segments self reliant and self sufficient in their development.
Globally job opportunities in the public sector are decreasing‚ same is the case in Pakistan where such opportunities are becoming lesser with each day.
One of the reasons behind the weakening state institutions is over staffing due to rampant nepotism and political appointments. Unable to support such a burden‚ these institutions have fallen in to rubble. Institutions like PIA‚ Steel Mills and Railways are just a few examples of nepotism‚ favouritism and financial mismanagement.
It is in the interest of the nation and the state to strengthen private sector‚ and to provide the people with opportunities of self reliance. So that instead of running after jobs‚ they could stand on their own feet to provide a livelihood to their families.
For this purpose‚ the government is launching SIX programmes for the youth.
1- MICRO INTEREST FREE LOANS:
The first programme is Micro Interest Free Loans‚ which will be focused on those segments of society who are financially weak. 3 billion rupees have been allocated for this scheme. 250 thousand people will benefit from this scheme. These loans would be interest free.
2- SMALL BUSINESS LOANS SCHEME:
The second scheme is Small Business Loans Scheme. This scheme is for those educated youngsters‚ who wish to start their own business. 50 per cent of these loans will be provided to women. These loans ranging from 500 thousand to 2 million rupees‚ will be given with a discounted interest rate of 8 percent. The rest will be paid by the government. Initially these loans will be provided through the National Bank of Pakistan and First Women Bank. Five billion rupees have been allocated for this scheme.
3- YOUTH TRAINING SCHEME:
It is the third programme‚ being initiated by the government for educated youngsters. Under this programme‚ young educated people having acquired 16 years of education from recognized institutions will be provided on-the-job- training‚ so that they could get job opportunities in the country or abroad. During the training a monthly stipend of rupees 10 thousand will be given to the worker for a training period of 6 months. 4 billion rupees have been allocated for the purpose and 50 thousand graduates will benefit from the scheme.
4- YOUTH SKILL DEVELOPMENT SCHEME:
The youth skill development scheme is aimed at providing vocational training to such youngsters who are jobless. Boys and girls up to 25 years of age will be able to benefit from the scheme‚ who have gained middle level education (8th Grade). These youngsters will be given a monthly stipend worth 3-5 thousand rupees‚ for a period of 6 months. The government will bear their fee. 800 million rupees have been allocated for this programme.
5- FEE PAYMENT FOR UNDER PRIVILEGED AREAS:
The fifth scheme is for (male & female) students who come from far flung areas of the country‚ and want to acquire higher education. Any talented student should not be deprived of educational opportunities‚ only because his or her parents cannot afford the academic expenses. Government will bear the fee for youngsters aiming for a post graduate programme for MA‚ MSc or higher level. 1.2 billion rupees have been allocated for this scheme and 30 thousand students will benefit from this initiative.
6- PM SCHEME FOR PROVISION OF LAPTOPS:
This is the age of Information Technology‚ in the current time‚ it is impossible to acquire quality education and research without information technology. IT is key to access the treasure of knowledge globally available.
The government of Punjab had initiated a laptop scheme for the purpose. The federal government has decided to launch this scheme nationwide. 100 thousand students will be provided laptops in accordance with the programme. An amount of 4 billion rupees has been allocated for the PM Laptop scheme.
Ladies and gentlemen‚ the federal cabinet has already given approval to all these initiatives. All arrangements for the implementation of these programmes have been completed. However‚ to make the schemes completely transparent and on merit‚ we would like to receive your suggestions and recommendations‚ as your input and guidance is important to us and more than welcome.
These schemes will be placed on a special website www.pmo.gov.pk from Monday the 23rd of September. You can give your feedback on the website or you can send an SMS to 80028. You can also post your suggestions and proposals to the Prime Minister Office Islamabad.
An advertisement stating all these initiatives will also be placed in all major newspapers of the country.
The process of receiving public opinions and suggestion will continue for 10 days‚ after which the schemes would be given a final shape in the light of these proposals.
Determined youths of the nation!
For these schemes the government has allocated an amount of 20 billion. I admit‚ that this amount is not a very large one‚ but we know that the country is passing through serious financial crises. As I have said earlier‚ every year we waste 500 billion rupees in to the black hole of institutional losses. A time will come‚ when the taxpayer\’s money would be spent in a more constructive manner. We have decided to allocate more money on your welfare and development‚ in the coming years.
We want to resolve all issues like energy crisis‚ load-shedding‚ health and education. We want to spend taxpayers money on the development of industries and trade‚ for the creation of jobs for the people of Pakistan.
My dear youngsters!
I should mention here‚ that these schemes would be implemented for all four provinces‚ Azad Kashmir and Gilgit Baltistan.
Get ready to benefit from these programmes‚ I believe that youngsters can play the main role in steering Pakistan on the path of self reliance. Stand up with the aim to rewrite your destiny.
God Willing the sun of a better future of the country will rise from your efforts.