The national economy of Pakistan has the huge part and potential hidden in minerals especially the gemstones. This crucial sector can be tapped to the economy by a careful and practical approach on top of this is a strategy.

Prof Saleem H Ali, a distinguished professor of energy and the environment at the University of Delaware, USA, during his lecture on ‘How can Minerals Contribute to Pakistan’s Development Path?’, has declared the above statement. The lecture was held at Sustainable Development Policy Institute (SDPI)

He indicated that right training and most importantly proper use of technology with expertise can be helpful to cash Riko Diq gold and copper reserves, offer marvelous opportunities.

Mineral resources have been positive as well negative impacts that are a dilemma, the extremely thoughtful approach is needed towards the consequences. In Pakistan, trade and aid are the oldest debate. It is merely important where to nail it, he said.

Dr. Imran Khalid of SDPI enlightened role of minerals in the economy of Pakistan. Although the potential and capacity of this particular sector are adverse but still its fiscal importance cannot be ignored.

Prof Saleem H Ali said that Pakistan Bureau of Statistics’ last detailed report on mining was issued in the year 2005-2006. “Whereas Pakistan Geological Survey reports also require better citation and certification details on reserves versus resources. Thus, the fundamental issue of this sector is the absence of real data about the minerals in Pakistan,” he said.

The critically important points to render it happen and take benefit from minerals of Pakistan are up-front tax incentives, the pace of extraction following price or planning for scarcity and the issues related to conflict mitigation. The long-term and economic viability of the operations must not ignore the core area of concern that is environmental integrity, he emphasized.

Prof Saleem H Ali said while highlighting the governance aspects of the sector that when venturing to mineral exploration do not neglect detailed mapping of rules, incentives, programmes, and capacities to address project or operational consequences.

He added that CPEC has its own importance for aiding cement industry, but energy minerals should be given priority. Coal gasification with low-carbon or sterile can be developed. Pakistani gem stones can be industrialized and branding them by selling in the international market of jewelry will be strongly influential he said.