Apr 26 - May 2, 2010

Sindh economic survey (1972-2008) was launched by the centre for research in Sindh (CRIS) at the HEC sponsored international conference on Sindh at the institute of business management (IOBM) in Karachi last week.

It is an in-depth and investigative document focusing minutely on different economic development aspects of Sindh including gross provincial product, agriculture, industry and large scale manufacturing, provincial financing and provincial government policies.

The document's project team comprises of professor Mohammad Janjua, project director and professor institute of business management, former deputy governor and chief economist State Bank of Pakistan.

The objective of the Sindh conference, organised in collaboration with HEC and IBA Sukkur was to provide a platform to academicians, researchers and professionals to discuss Sindh's socioeconomic challenges. Its purpose was to review Sindh's economic performance, industrialization, HRD, education, urban-rural linkages, environment and energy. It aimed at providing opportunities to share knowledge and foster research and development in this regard.

Participants from HEC, IBA Sukkur, Sindh government, SBP, Fast, Hamdard University, University of Karachi, Balochistan University, KPT, Thar coal development board, Yousuf Adil and Company, abroad attended the conference. Shahjehan Karim, president IOBM was also present.

Speaking during the conference, Dr Javaid Laghari, chairman higher education commission urged Pakistani universities to make their teaching and research programmes local, provincial and national needs-oriented. Acknowledging IOBM in establishing Cris, he said this centre would link its research and training programmes with private and public sector institutions for socioeconomic betterment.

Dr SM Qureshi, chairman chartered inspection and evaluation committee emphasized on rural-urban linkages, quality of research and managerial excellence in educational and research pursuits.

Talib Karim, executive director, and academics IOBM in his issue paper said: "a major weakness of our national statistical system is its lack of coverage of firm level data. That is one of the most important causes of the stagnation of factor productivity, not just labor productivity but also capital efficiency." Syed Asad Ali in his remarks highlighted the enormous natural and human resource potential of Sindh and identified law and order situation as an impediment in development.

Dr Javed Ansari, Dean CBM made an earnest appeal to the government for home-grown, not imported development in potential areas of development including investment, research, educational management expertise and mutually beneficial rural-urban linkages.

As many as six technical sessions addressed and recorded recommendations on Sindh's core socioeconomic issues and were captioned and chaired as follows: "Economic Performance of Sindh" by Ashraf Janjua; "Industrialization and Corporate Strategy" by Dr Shahida Wizarat, senior fellow and HoD economics, IOBM; "Human Resource Development" by Mahtab Rashidi, ex- secretary ministry of education Sindh; "Education" by Dr Mehtab Karim, senior research advisor, PRC, professor school of public policy George Mason University, Washington; "Urban-Rural Linkages" by Tasneem Ahmed Siddiqi, ex-chief secretary Sindh government; and "Environment and Energy" by Hussain Ali, secretary ministry of environment, Sindh.

Research papers presented during the conference included "key challenges and opportunities for human resource development in Sindh" by Dr Fasihul Alam, professor management studies, University of Chittagong Bangladesh.