ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan says the Covid-19 pandemic has taken a heavy toll on poor countries, accentuating inequalities within these countries and between the rich and poor countries.
Addressing the 10th D-8 virtual summit today, Prime Minister Khan said: “The developing countries are faced with the dilemma of not only saving people from the deadly virus but also saving them from hunger.”
The theme of the summit, hosted by Bangladesh, was “Partnership for a Transformative World: Harnessing Power of Youth and Technology.”
“Covid-19 pandemic has caused deaths of over 2.9 million people. More than 250 million people have lost their jobs while trillions of dollars will be lost as a result of global economic contraction,” the premier said.
Today, he pointed out, the world boasts the largest number of young people in human history. Even before the pandemic struck, one fifth of the global youth was unemployed and didn’t have education and skills to equip themselves for the 21st century, he added.
“We have 550 million young population in D-8 countries. Our youth have not only potential to optimise our opportunities but also overcome common challenges,” Prime Minister Khan said.
“We must create new opportunities for this predominant component of our population. Harnessing technology, promoting invention and investing in youth education, skills and training is, therefore, an urgent imperative.”
“We in Pakistan are pursuing this initiative through programmes such as Kamyab Jawan, Hunarmand Pakistan and Youth Entrepreneurship Scheme.”
The prime minister stressed that a country alone cannot address challenges of the rapidly changing world. “I am happy in D-8 we have a platform to work for mutual benefit and win-win solution.”