Some Comments and Reflections on "Planning Experience in Pakistan"

A. K. M. Ghulam Rabbani


Dr. Huda has earned our gratitude by elaborating in lucid
terms the problems and experiences of planning in Pakistan [1]. As we
approach the Fourth Plan we need to have a fresh look at past
experiences so as to formulate the future plans in a much more realistic
fashion than has hitherto been done. Dr. Huda, in his Address, has
raised many issues in this respect. My comments will be limited to the
planning technique that has so far been pursued in Pakistan. My concern
is basically regarding the changes, that we would like to see, made in
the coming plan in this respect. At the technical level, the formulation
of a five-year plan has now be¬come synonymous with working out a
multisectoral econometric (consistency) model, which provides the basic
framework around which the plan is built. However, setting up a
macro-model is only a part of the plan formulation. A comprehensive
model which purports simply to develop and test the con¬sistency and
optimality of an economic strategy is, at best, partially relevent to
planning needs [5]. In fact, complete formulation of a five-year plan
involves the following six categories of interrelated studies — the
strength and realism of a plan depends on how satisfactorily these works
are accomplished while a plan is formulated:

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