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| Last Updated:04/04/2014

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Less than half of Pakistanis have access to sanitation: World Bank report

Business Standard, 03 April 2014


ISLAMABAD: Less than half of Pakistanis have access to sanitation and only two-thirds to electricity, a latest report by the World Bank has revealed.


The report, Reducing Poverty by Closing South Asia's Infrastructure Gap, is the first analysis of Pakistan's infrastructure needs by the World Bank.


According to the Express Tribune, the drawbacks of ignoring investments in transport, electricity, water supply and sanitation, solid waste, telecom and irrigation will lead to slow economic growth in Pakistan.


The report said that slow economic growth will inch up poverty and the development goals will never be achieved.


In terms of percentage, every year Islamabad will have to invest at least 6.6 percent and at most 9.5 percent of its total national output in meeting deficiencies in these critical areas, the report said.


Due to years of negligence and lack of investment only 67 percent of the country's population has access to electricity, according to the report.


To increase access and keep pace with the growth rate, Pakistan needs to invest from 3.7 percent of national output, or Rs 951 billion, to 5.5 percent, or Rs 1.4 trillion, per annum on electricity, the report stated.


Similarly, only 47 percent of the population has access to sanitation services. It will require up to Rs 208 billion per annum investment for reversing the trend, it added.