An independent think tank has claimed that Pakistan’s economy grew by 3.1% and not 4.7% as Finance Minister Ishaq Dar had stated.
Social Policy and Development Center (SPDC)’s statistics have challenged the credibility of the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS), following the report by the Policy Research Institute of Market Economy which mentioned that the inflation rate was being understated by the PBS.
About Social Policy and Development Center
Moeen Qureshi, the world renowned economist and former interim Prime Minister, is the patron of SPDC, a think tank that specializes in economic matters. Former State Bank governor Dr. Ishrat Hussain and former finance secretary Saeed Qureshi are on its board as well.
Ishaq Dar boasted about Pakistan’s GDP growth rate touching 4.7% this year while revealing the Economic Survey of Pakistan for 2015-16. This figure, if true, would have been the highest recorded growth in Pakistan since the last eight years.
However, the actual rate as claimed by the SPDC, is 3.1%. It is also considered as the lowest growth rate in seven years.
Falsifications by the PBS
SPDC also said that this was the third consecutive year that the PBS had overstated the GDP growth rate.
In 2014, PBS brought down the relatively high GDP growth rate of 4.4% achieved in 2011-2012 to 3.8% to show that they had achieved a high GDP growth rate of 4% in 2013-2014 which was the highest in six years, according to SPDC report.
They estimated that the growth rate had been overestimated in 10 out of 18 sectors of the economy.
Compared with the official claim of only 0.2% decrease in the agricultural sector, the actual depreciation was 2%. The industry grew at 5.5% instead of the official claim of 6.8% by the government.
The agriculture sector is important for Pakistan because it accounts for 21% of GDP and also because 60% of manufacturing is agriculture-based and 40% of trading and transport is also on agro based products, according to the SPDC.
They also noted that electricity generation increased by 2% only which can not warrant a growth of 4.7% in the economy of Pakistan.
Via Pakistan Today