Lahore, February 22, 2021 (PPI-OT): The World Bank is preparing a new Country Partner Framework (CPF) for the next five years from fiscal year 2022-2026. For this, the World Bank organized a consultation webinar on Friday, 19th February, 2021 with students from very exclusive universities across Pakistan to make sure that students’ voices are represented and considered in their future precedence. On the Panel were Ms. Melinda Good, Operation Manager, World Bank Pakistan, Ms. Amena Raja, Senior Operations Officer from The World Bank, and AVM (R.) Faaiz Amir, Member (Governance and amp; Academics), from Higher Education Commission (HEC). Lahore School of Economics (LSE) was one of the only 3 universities selected from Punjab to be a part of the Webinar. Muaz R. Chaudhry, Research Associate at the Innovation and Technology Centre, and Aysham Sohail were the two nominees from senior year (BSc. IV) to represent the Lahore School.
The webinar focused on five themes: Girls and Boys Education, Governance, Growing Healthy, Green Pakistan and Growth. Under these themes, the main priority or focus areas were i) primary and secondary access, quality education ii) Stunting, under 5 mortality, COVID-19 iii) Renewable energy, water and agriculture productivity, pollution/solid waste and iv) Revenue mobilization, social and economic inclusion, competitiveness. The consultation meeting was of immense significance to the national policy of the World Bank towards Pakistan and the Lahore School’s representatives raised extremely important points in the meeting.
Ms. Sohail raised the point of high spells of unemployment in Pakistan due to job-skill mismatch in various sectors of the economy that needs to be looked into; moreover she discussed the new curriculum change in that is being brought about in Pakistan and its high probability of worsening the quality of education with an increased intensity of extremism ingrained within the education system.
Mr. Chaudhry, on the other hand, appreciated the World Bank’s effort to improve the country’s education system, but suggested aiming for education more than just for ‘Girls and Boys’ and insisted on renaming the goal to ‘Education for All’, being inclusive for the state and UN recognised gender minorities. He also brought up the point of the national education system being influenced immensely by external forces, therefore, deteriorating the quality of education in the country due to increased extremism and lack of freedom.
He then brought into concern the issue of immense PM-2.5 emissions within the country that are majorly a result of crop burning in Pakistan causing the worrisome issue of smog, especially in Lahore for the last few years. The points raised by the Lahore School’s representatives were highly appreciated by the World Bank team who then promised to focus on the highlighted issues and to integrate the points into their national partnership program framework of 2022-2026.
For more information, contact:
Lahore School of Economics
Intersection Main Boulevard Phase VI DHA,
Burki Road, Lahore – 53200, Pakistan
Tel: +92-42-36560935, 36560939