Islamabad ranked country’s most competitive city in PRIME’s report


ISLAMABAD: The Policy Research Institute of Market Economy (PRIME) in its competitiveness index report titled “Cities as Drivers of Growth” launched in collaboration with the Islamabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry (ICCI) has ranked Islamabad as the most competitive city in Pakistan.

The report covered Islamabad and four provincial capitals using three main indicators including economic dynamism, infrastructure efficiency and livability.

On the economic dynamism index, Islamabad was ranked first, Lahore second, Karachi third, Peshawar fourth and Quetta last.  On the basis of infrastructure efficiency index, Islamabad was ranked first, Quetta second, Lahore third, Karachi fourth and Peshawar last. And on the livability index Islamabad was first, Karachi second, Quetta third, Peshawar fourth and Lahore last.

Addressing the report launching ceremony, PRIME Chief Operating Officer (COO) Ayesha Bilal said that cities were becoming drivers of growth in the world and there was a greater need to highlight the competitiveness of Pakistani cities that would create more competition among them. She said that PRIME has focused on federal and provincial capitals in its initial research report, while six more cities would be covered for such research study in the next phase.

Ayesha said that ICCI was the private sector’s key platform, therefore, it was decided to launch the report from this particular platform.

PRIME Director Zia Banday said that China achieved phenomenal economic growth by focusing on cities and stressed that Pakistan should also follow the Chinese model to accelerate its own economic growth.

He hoped that this researched-based index would help policymakers in devising better plans for the development of cities.

PRIME Research Fellow Aniqa Arshad gave a detailed presentation on the Metropolitan Competitiveness Index of PRIME.

ICCI President Sheikh Amir Waheed in his welcome address lauded PRIME’s and ICCI’s efforts for launching a report titled “Cities as Drivers of Growth” and hoped that it would provide better guidelines to the current and incoming government for better planning in developing cities.

He further said that according to a research study of McKinsey Global Institute, 600 major cities of the world accounted for 60 per cent of the global Gross Domestic Product (GDP) which showed that the role of cities was very important in the economic development of a country.

The ICCI president also said that according to a United Nations (UN) report, cities were playing a vital role in the GDB growth and were providing better opportunities to people for uplifting their living standards.

He stressed that government should focus more on the better development of major cities and improve their infrastructure to help trade and industry for the economy’s fast growth.

ICCI Senior Vice President Muhammad Naveed Malik and Vice President Nisar Mirza thanked PRIME for a launching the report and hoped that it would guide policymakers to transform major cities into true drivers of economic growth.