Information minister says decision in line with new National Security Policy’s focus on geo-economics
The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI)-led government on Friday announced it will offer permanent residency in Pakistan to foreigners who invest in the country.
“In line with the new National Security Policy, through which Pakistan declared geo-economics as core of its national security doctrine, the government has decided to allow permanent residency scheme for foreign nationals,” Information Minister Chaudhry Fawad Hussain said in a posting on Twitter. “[The] new policy allows foreigners to get permanent resident status in lieu of investment,” he added.
According to sources, the policy had been under consideration for several months and the government believes it would attract “billions” in foreign investment by offering Pakistani nationality to potential investors. Of particular interest to the government, they say, is wealthy Afghan nationals, and U.S.-based Sikhs who might be amenable to investing in the country due to its push for the protection and rehabilitation of Sikh religious sites.
In a report, daily Dawn noted that the government might also hope to attract the investment of Arabs who make annual hunting trips to Pakistan. Similarly, it said, Prime Minister Imran Khan had recently issued statements stressing that he wanted to encourage Chinese investors to relocate their industries to Pakistan.
Earlier this week, the prime minister stressed that industrialization was key to Pakistan’s economic prosperity, and warned that the government would have no choice but to keep approaching the International Monetary Fund for further loans if it didn’t experience a significant uptick in its exports.