PESHAWAR: The Economic Cooperation and Development Forum (ECDF) had identified crucial measures and interventions required for economic growth of the merged tribal districts.

The ECDF was formed under the Fata Economic Revitalisation Programme (FERP) conceived by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and funded by USAID.

The project is being implemented by Small and Medium Enterprises Development Authority (Smeda) in collaboration with the UNDP, federal and provincial departments.

Provincial Chief Smeda Rashid Aman told the state-run media that recommendations for economic development of merged tribal districts have been prepared after a series of marathon consultations of different thematic groups that were constituted under ECDF have identified short, medium and long-term measures and then have proposed required steps to generate economic activities in the tribal districts.

Experts from public and private sectors have also identified the role and responsibilities of all concerned departments stakeholders to provide them all required facilities for the purpose. A copy of the document has already been presented to KP Chief Minister Mahmood Khan and other concerned authorities of the provincial government.

The Smeda provincial head said that in light of the recommendations of ECDF, the chief minister has already announced economic development plan of Rs68 billion for merged districts.

The plan, he said has nearly 21 measures and interventions and proposed the role of both public sector and donors or the capacity building of stakeholders, infrastructure development, entrepreneurship development, sector development, economic development or marketing and communication in the region.

Rashid Aman said that Smeda along with UNDP would play its role in the economic development of merged districts. For this purpose, they are in the process of constant consultations with the consultant hired to review the document of the economic development plan and bring further improvement in it.

Since last three months, he said, Smeda KP is constantly in contact with the consultant and very soon it would be first presented to Additional Chief Secretary (ACS) KP and shared with all other concerned authorities.

The document has been prepared by mobilising the concerned stakeholders, arranging focused group discussions related with thematic areas and prioritized sectors. The forum met on quarterly basis and proposed the desired interventions. The proposed interventions were then validated by key informant interviews followed by focused group discussion again.

 

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