LONDON: While offering every possible facility, Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif has invited Pakistani diaspora to invest in various projects in his province. “Punjab is safe for you and for your valued investment. The country has given everything from name to identity, now it is your duty to come forward to serve your homeland”, he requested.
He was addressing Punjab Healthcare Sector Road show at ‘Four Seasons’ hotel in Park Lane, central London on Monday (10th September). The event was organized by the Government of Punjab in collaboration with the Pakistan High Commission London. Senior representatives of British healthcare companies, officials of UK’s Department for International Trade (DIT), medical professionals and investors attended the Road show.
Chairing the event, Shahbaz Sharif gave a detailed overview of the reforms to a wide range of British healthcare companies with a view to seeking their feedback for further refinement of the service delivery in the healthcare sector. He shared with the British medical fraternity that the Punjab Government was planning to outsource major non-clinical services of hospitals to private partners.
The Chief Minister invited the leading British companies, providing similar services in the hospital of the UK, to take advantage of these opportunities. He said that this collaboration would be mutually beneficial and would augment his Government’s endeavours for effective service delivery in the province.
Mr Shehbaz Sharif also shared with guests his Government’s initiative of introducing his new model of hospital administration through complete management outsourcing of newly established hospitals. He invited the experienced companies to take up management of such facilities under a well-defined and mutually agreed upon agreement. Furthermore, the Chief Minister shared with the attendees that the Government of Punjab was inviting investment in the health sector whereby, in a Public Private Partnership (PPP) mode, entrepreneurs may come to Punjab and establish state of the art healthcare facilities.The British companies evinced keen interest in Punjab’s healthcare outsourcing opportunities and PPP mode investment. Their representatives also appreciated the reform initiatives of the Government of Punjab.
In his welcome address, Pakistan High Commissioner Syed Ibne Abbas termed the Healthcare Roadshow a timely initiative of the Chief Minister of Punjab and appreciated the reforms in the provincial health sector. He said, on the back of an improving economy, the government is now focused on social sector development, particularly the healthcare.
Senior officials of the Government of Punjab also spoke on the occasion and some of them made presentations as well. They included Dr Mukhtar Bharet, Minister for Population Welfare; Dr Umar Saif, Adviser to the Chief Minister on IT; Mr Najam Shah, Secretary Specialized Healthcare, and Medical Education Department; Mr. Ali Jan Khan, Secretary Primary and Secondary Healthcare Department; Professor Saeed Akhtar, and, via video link from Pakistan, Professor Masood Akhtar.
Mohammad Jehanzeb Khan, Chairman Planning and Development Department, Punjab, conducted the Q&A session at the end. The attendees asked searching questions and expressed their interest to invest in the healthcare sector of Punjab.
The Roadshow provided a good opportunity to introduce multiple reform initiatives launched by the Punjab Government in healthcare sector to enhance service delivery in this vital aspect of human development.
The Chief Minister and his team of senior officials held follow up sessions with the interested individual companies at the Pakistan High Commission London on following day (Tuesday 11 September).