During the last 17 years, the direct and indirect cost incurred by Pakistan due to incidents of terrorism amounted to US$ 126.79 billion, which is equivalent to Rs. 10.762 trillion, according to estimates in the Pakistan Economic Survey 2017-18.
Pakistan has achieved progressive and significant improvement in the country’s overall security landscape in recent years. This has been achieved primarily due to comprehensive counter-terrorism operation culminating with Zarb-e-Azb and Khyber-I-IV operations, and the sacrifices of the security forces.
This has resulted in a major decline in the number of terrorist attacks as well as the causalities suffered.
The total losses incurred, both fiscal and human, have been declining. During 2016-17, it declined by 15.7 percent over the corresponding period the year before while it further declined during July-February 2017-18 by 62.2 percent, which clearly reflects the effectiveness of efforts to eliminate terrorism and extremism from the country.
Pakistan Ranked 5th On Global Terrorism Index
Pakistan’s success in countering-terrorism has been acknowledged in the recent Global Terrorism Index Report 2017 published by the Sydney-based Institute for Economics and Peace. According to this report, Pakistan ranked 5th out of 163 countries with a score of 8.4 out of 10 on the index, a marked improvement as it ranked 4th in 2007.
Pakistan has shown improvement in its global terrorism index ranking with a decline in the terrorist incidents and the deaths related to the terrorist activities. This is the third consecutive year that Pakistan has witnessed fewer terrorist attacks and deaths.
Moreover, India ranked at 8th and Turkey ranked at 9th, marking their entry into the top 10 countries affected by terrorism. Along with Pakistan, a positive trend was also noted in Afghanistan, Nigeria, and Syria.
These current developments in Pakistan’s fight against terrorism are benchmarks not just for regional countries but for the international community as well. While Pakistan is successfully fighting the terrorists on its soil, it also expects the US, NATO and Afghan forces to do the same in Afghanistan.
However, Pakistan continues to be a target of terrorism, including state-sponsored terrorism from its immediate neighbors. The conflict and instability in Afghanistan remained an impediment to regional peace, security, and development. Pakistan, because of its proximity and historical connection faced the most serious consequences of war in Afghanistan, ranging from security to socio-economic.
Hosting millions of Afghan refugees not only burdened Pakistan’s economy but also put additional stress on its internal security situation. Additionally, Pakistan continues to face attacks from terrorist hide-outs in Afghanistan.
The success in counter-terrorism has played a critical role in creating a conducive economic environment and results have started to appear in terms of growth across various sectors of the economy.