Pakistan Day: The Other 99% of the Pakistan Story

As Pakistanis celebrate the 78th anniversary of the Lahore Resolution of 1940 on March 23 this year, it's time to ask the following questions: How is Pakistan doing? What is the reality? How is it perceived?

The worst 1% of the Pakistan story gets 99% of the media coverage, says Lahore-based Pakistani entrepreneur Monis Rahman. In the same vein, former US President Bill Clinton has said this about the media coverage of the continent of Africa: "Follow the trend lines, not the headlines".

So what is the other 99% of the Pakistan story that gets little or no media attention? What are the trend lines that are missed by those just relying on the headlines? Let's try and enumerate these:

1. Pakistan's economy has crossed the trillion dollar mark in terms of purchasing power, according to the IMF. It is among the world's top 25 largest economies. It is also the world's third fastest growing among the trillion dollar plus economies.

2. Pakistanis have consistently ranked higher than their neighbors on the United Nations World Happiness Index since it began producing annual reports in 2011.  Pakistan rose from 80th place in 2017 to 75th place this year while all of its neighbors slid from last year's happiness rankings.   Bangladesh dropped 5 spots to 115 while India slid 11 places to 133 among 156 nations ranked.  China (86), Bhutan (97), Iran (106), Bangladesh (115), and Sri Lanka (116), India (133) and Afghanistan (145) all fared worse than Pakistan (75).

3. The share of national income of Pakistan's poorest 20% of households has increased from 8.1% to 9.6% since 1990 , according to the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and Pacific (NESCAP) Statistical Yearbook for 2015.  It's the highest share of income for the bottom income quintile in the region.

4. Pakistan is the world's fastest growing steel producer. Steel production in Pakistan jumped 39.3% to 5 million tons last year, according to World Steel Association. Earlier, Pakistan steel industry ramped up its output from 2.9 million tons in 2015 to 3.6 million tons in 2016. Steel demand in Pakistan is currently about 10 million tons a year and growing at 25-30% a year. Half of it was met by local production while the rest was imported in 2017. Pakistani production capacity is growing at 40%, faster than 25-30% growth in demand.

5. Pakistan's public spending on education has more than doubled since 2010 to reach $8.6 billion a year in 2017, rivaling defense spending of $8.7 billion. Private spending on education by parents is even higher than the public spending with the total adding up to nearly 6% of GDP. Pakistan has 1.7 million teachers, nearly three times the number of soldiers currently serving in the country's armed forces.

6. There are over 3 million students enrolled in grades 13 through 16 in Pakistan's 1,086 degree colleges and 161 universities, according to Pakistan Higher Education Commission report for 2013-14.  The 3 million enrollment is 15% of the 20 million Pakistanis in the eligible age group of 18-24 years.  In addition, there are over 255,000 Pakistanis enrolled in vocational training schools, according to Technical Education and Vocational Training Authority (TEVTA).

7. Pakistan has emerged as the country with the highest percentage of Highly Cited Papers compared with the BRIC countries (Brazil, Russia, India and China) in the last 10 years, according to Thomson Reuters. Pakistan has done so despite the fact that its "R&D environment faced substantial economic challenges". 

8. In 2014, Pakistan became the first Asian country and only the third in the world after Turkey and Serbia to be honored with CERN's associate membership. The status of associate member is a step before full membership. As an associate member, Pakistan  is entitled to attend open and restricted sessions of the organization.

9. Rising numbers of working women are bringing about a silent social revolution in Pakistan. World Economic Forum's gender parity program is led by Saadia Zahidi from Pakistan.  In her book "50 Million Rising", Saadia talks about her father being the first in his family to go to university. He believed in girls' education and career opportunities. She recalls him suggesting that "my sister could become a pilot because the Pakistan Air Force had just starting to train women. Another time he speculated that I could become a news anchor because Pakistan Television, the state-owned television network, had started recruiting more women".  

10. China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) related projects are transforming the least developed regions of Pakistan. Energy and infrastructure projects are changing the face of vast regions of Balochistan, rural Sindh, Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA), Gigit-Baltistan (GB) and Khyber Pukhtunkhwa (KPK).

11. Pakistan's labor force expansion is the 3rd biggest in the world after India and Nigeria, according to UN World Population Prospects 2017. Rising working age population and growing workforce participation of both men and women in developing nations like Pakistan will boost domestic savings and investment, according to Global Development Horizons (GDH) report. Escaping the low savings low investment trap will help accelerate the lagging GDP growth rate in Pakistan, as will increased foreign investment such as the Chinese investment in China-Pakistan Economic Corridor.

12. Rising incomes of Pakistanis are reflected in the retail sales growth which is ranked the fastest in the world.  The market is forecast to expand 8.2% a year through 2016-2021 as disposable income has doubled since 2010, according to research group Euromonitor International as reported by Bloomberg News. The size of the middle class is estimated to surpass that of the U.K. and Italy in the forecast period, it said.

13. Pakistan is the 5th largest motorcycle market in the world after China, India, Indonesia and Vietnam. With 7,500 new motorcycles being sold everyday, Pakistan is also the among the world's fastest growing two-wheeler markets. Passenger car and motorcycle sales in Pakistan are both soaring at rates of over 20% a year.

14. There are over 50 million broadband subscribers in Pakistan. Over a million new subscribers are being added every month, putting Pakistan among the biggest and fastest growing mobile broadband markets in the world. 

15. Pakistan's tourism industry, currently estimated at $20 billion (6.9% of GDP in 2016), is booming, according to data available from multiple reliable sources. World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) forecasts it to grow to over $36 billion within a decade.   Significantly improved security situation has helped boost annual tourist arrivals in Pakistan by 300% since 2013 to 1.75 million in 2016, while domestic travelers increased 30% to 38.3 million, according to the state-owned Pakistan Tourism Development Corp.  Hotel bookings increased 80 percent in 2016, according to Jovago, Pakistan’s biggest hotel booking website.

Summary:

As Pakistanis celebrate 78th anniversary of the Lahore Resolution passed on March 23, 1940, the key trend lines for their country continue to be very positive.  Resilient people of Pakistan are overcoming multiple challenges stemming from the continuing war in Afghanistan and India's abiding hostility. Pakistanis are defying all the prophecies of doom and gloom and thriving against all odds. Pakistan's trillion dollar economy is among the top 25 largest in the world. Rising disposable incomes are reflected in Pakistan being the world's fastest growing retail market. The increasing share of income of the bottom 20% of households puts Pakistan among the less unequal countries in the world. Pakistan is indeed rising. 

Here's a video titled "Pakistan Rising or Falling? Myth vs Reality"

https://youtu.be/XDima7JSxKs




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Comments

Riaz Haq said…
#Pakistan’s #FDI jumps 15.6% to $1.94 billion in first 8 months of fiscal year 2017-18 on massive #Chinese inflows. #CPEC

http://www.gulf-times.com/story/585484/Pakistan-s-FDI-jumps-15-6-on-massive-Chinese-inflo

The China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, a flagship project of China’s prestigious One Belt One Road, links its restive Xinjiang region with Balochistan province. Pakistan’s foreign direct investment inflows from China reached $1.281bn, an increase of 139%, in the July-February period of the financial year 2018.

Pakistan’s foreign direct investment (FDI) surged 15.6% in the eight months of current fiscal year largely drawing strength from massive Chinese inflows under China-Pakistan Economic Corridor projects, data released by State Bank of Pakistan showed yesterday.
The FDI in the July-February period of FY18 increased to $1.941bn from $1.678bn a year earlier. In February alone, the FDI inflows were recorded at $340.8mn, compared to $146.7mn in the corresponding month of last fiscal year.
During period under review, the FDI inflows from China reached $1.281bn, an increase of 139% over the same period of the last fiscal.
On the other hand, investments from the United Kingdom rose to $205.5mn against $139.9mn last year, whereas inflows from Malaysian firms increased to $121.3mn from $16.7mn year ago. Most of the investment went into power, construction and financial sectors.
Analysts expect foreign direct investment to be around $3bn-$3.5bn during the current fiscal year, reflecting surging Chinese investments under China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) – a part of Beijing’s “One Belt, One Road” initiative to develop trade and transport infrastructure in Asia.
“Our flow of foreign investment has reduced to one country that’s China. For a country like Pakistan, foreign investment should be broad-based. We shouldn’t put all the eggs in one basket,” said Dr Ashfaque H Khan, renowned economist and dean at NUST School of Social Sciences.
“Since Pakistan-China relations are very deep-rooted and strategic in nature that’s why the flow of FDI is rising, but our traditional foreign investors appear to have shied away from Pakistan which is not a good sign,” Khan added.
It must be noted that foreign direct investment for fiscal year 2017 stood at $2.218bn. The FDI data came after the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) Extended Fund Facility post-programme monitoring report showed the external sector imbalances were likely to elevate further this fiscal year owing to widening current account deficit.
“Despite continued recovery of exports and some moderation of import growth, the current account deficit is expected to widen to $15.7bn (4.8% of GDP) this year,” the IMF said in the report.
“On current policies, and based on the authorities’ ambitious external financing plans, gross international reserves are expected to further weaken to $12.1bn (2.2 months of imports) this year, with risks skewed to the downside,” the IMF report said.
The FDI from China under economic corridor could help improve depleting foreign exchange reserves as the country’s account remained negative. However, the CPEC investments are increasing debt risks for Pakistan.
“While some of the gap in the current account (CPEC-related) is being funded by increased foreign direct investment – mainly from China a large portion is being funded by debt.
This has led to a rise in Pakistan’s overall external debt to 27.3% of GDP in December 2017 from 24.8% in December 2015 which we believe will increase further,” a report released by Standard Chartered Bank last week said.
Riaz Haq said…
Pakistan’s latest shot at industrialisation under CPEC needs homework

https://tribune.com.pk/story/1663001/2-cpec-pakistans-latest-shot-industrialisation-needs-homework/

The new phase of industrialisation – this time powered by the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) – will not be possible without joint ventures between Chinese and Pakistani businesses, said Planning Commission Deputy Chairman Sartaj Aziz.


The industrial cooperation under CPEC offers great opportunities and Chinese were considering shifting their industries to prioritised Special Economic Zones (SEZs) of CPEC, said the deputy chairman, a veteran economist.

But full benefits of the SEZs cannot be reaped until Pakistani businessmen enter into joint ventures with Chinese partners, said Aziz. He said that his feeling was that the Pakistani entrepreneurs have not done their homework.

Under the second phase of CPEC, Pakistan and China plan to set up at least nine special zones across the country, although the local authorities have yet to resolve issues that could hamper Chinese investment.

Pakistan sees investment in SEZs as its second phase of industrialisation, which would not only increase per capita income but add hundreds of thousands of jobs.

Aziz said that Pakistan’s economy was also dependent on global economic growth prospects but the countries have started looking inwards, which is detrimental to global growth. In such a scenario, the exports prospects are not very bright but CPEC provides the balancing factor to Pakistan, said the deputy chairman.

A recent report of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has projected double digit growth in exports for fiscal year 2018-19, starting from July. For the next two years, IMF projections also show growth in exports in the same league, which is double the projected growth in imports.

Aziz said that the $60-billion CPEC bonanza is a big opportunity for Pakistan’s economy. During first eight months of the fiscal year, the Chinese foreign direct investment was equal to 60% of the total foreign investment in Pakistan.

Aziz also underlined the need to project a soft image of Pakistan in Davos at the World Economic Forum (WEF) meet-up. The deputy chairman said that Pakistan’s economy was at a turning point and this was the best opportunity to showcase it to the global elites.
Riaz Haq said…
Pakistan's foreign exchange position stable: spokesman

https://dunyanews.tv/en/Business/431699-Pakistan-foreign-exchange-position-stable

Clarifying a news item titled “Pakistan’s net reserves stand a minus $724 million” published in a section of press, the spokesman said the story was based on the recently published Post Programme Monitoring (PPM) report by the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

He said,” The Net International Reserves (NIR) position reflects foreign currency assets of the Central Bank as against its liabilities.” The story was comparing spot position of foreign exchange reserves with long term liabilities of the State Bank, which was not a good comparison as liabilities were to be retired gradually over a period of five to ten years time and not immediately in one instalment, he added.

He said the IMF loan for instance was to be repaid by the year 2026 meaning approximately $800 million repayment a year starting from 2018.

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It was also pertinent to mention that when present government took charge in 2013, Pakistan’s NIR was negative $ 2.5 billion, he added.

He said the decrease in foreign exchange reserves were mainly due to current account deficit of which imports were the main component. Imports had shown unprecedented increase during 2016-17, while exports were declined.

The spokesman further said the negative trend in exports had bottomed out and the government initiatives had shown positive result as exports had increased by about 12 percent workers’ remittances improved by 3.4 percent during July-February, 2017-18 and the Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) also posted strong growth of 15.6 percent during July-Feb, FY2018 over last year.

He said while the current account deficit which had seen expansion above 210 percent in July of current fiscal year had now been started contracted as during Jul-Jan FY2018 it had been contained at 48 percent. With these positive trends strengthening, incoming months the current account deficit will improve in FY18, the spokesman said.

He added that the writers, in fact, had ignored the positive side of Fund’s assessment and had focused only on interpreting the potential challenges to the economy highlighted by the Fund.

He said the IMF had also endorsed the positive and favourable outlook for economic growth, with real GDP estimated to grow at 5.6 percent in 2017/18 within favourable inflation environment. The Fund had mentioned that the economic growth had continued to strengthen supported by improved energy supply, investment related to the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, strong credit growth, and continued investor and consumer confidence.

The spokesman said it was important to share some positive trend of the economy during the current fiscal year. The government had been able to achieve fiscal consolidation without compromising development expenditures as fiscal deficit had been contained at 2.2 percent of GDP during first half of current fiscal year against 2.5 percent in the same period of FY2017.

He said PSDP expenditures increased to Rs.733 billion during FY2017 over last year and this year the allocation was Rs.1 trillion. FBR tax collection continued to show impressive growth above 17 percent during July- February, FY2018 while inflation had been contained at 3.84 percent during July-Feb, FY2018 against 3.90 percent in the same period of FY2017. LSM had shown impressive broad-based growth of 6.33 percent during July-Jan,FY2018 compared to 3.59 percent of last year.

FDI after witnessing a subdued growth during last two months of CFY2018 had improved in February 2018 by 235 percent over January 2018, and by 15.6 percent during July-Feb, FY2018, he added.
Riaz Haq said…
Unilever announces fresh $120 million investment in Pakistan

https://tribune.com.pk/story/1664314/2-unilever-announces-fresh-120-million-investment-pakistan/

Pakistan’s fast-moving consumer goods segment is set to see fresh investment after Unilever Plc – a Dutch consumer goods giant – announced foreign direct investment (FDI) of $120 million (Rs11 billion) for expansion of its operations in the country over the next two years.

The announcement comes as a welcome sign for Pakistan that has suffered from low levels of FDI in recent years.

“A majority of the investment will be made to enhance manufacturing operations across Unilever’s four factories in Pakistan over the next two years,” a statement quoted the company as saying on Monday.


The company manufactures about 30 brands in the areas of home care, personal care, foods, beverages and ice cream in Pakistan.

“Unilever is aiming to make it (Unilever Pakistan) a billion-euro firm next year (by December 2019) from 800-810 million euros (in revenues) at present,” company’s Senior Manager Corporate Affairs Hussain Ali Talib told The Express Tribune.

“In 2013, Unilever Overseas Holdings, which is a majority shareholder in Unilever Pakistan Limited, invested over €400 million ($530 million) in Pakistan, which is the single largest foreign direct investment in the recent history of Pakistan,” the statement said.

It called Unilever’s operations in Pakistan amongst the best performing business units within Unilever’s global operations. “The new investment reaffirmed Unilever’s strong commitment to local operations and to Pakistan’s economic potential,” it said.

The announcement about the investment was made by a delegation of Unilever Pakistan in a meeting with Adviser to the Prime Minister on Finance Miftah Ismail.

“The investment is indeed an acknowledgement of the country’s growth potential and the macroeconomic stability it has gained over the last four years,” the statement quoted Ismail as saying.

The planned investment supports Pakistan’s narration of being a growing economy with over 70 million middle-class population out of a total of over 200 million.

Pakistan has been on the radar of foreign investors over the past couple of years. FDI increased 15.6% to $1.94 billion in the first eight months (July 2017 to February 2018) of the current fiscal year from $1.68 billion in the same period of previous year, according to the State Bank of Pakistan.

Overseas Investors Chamber of Commerce and Industry Secretary General M Abdul Aleem recently said many European investors in the auto, infrastructure and liquefied natural gas (LNG) import terminal sectors would make major investment decisions for Pakistan in the near future.

Some of them were waiting for regulatory approvals to initiate the investment process in Pakistan, he said.

Stability in Pakistan integral to China’s development, reiterates Chineseambassador

“Pakistan carries a huge potential to grow. Investment climate will be much better in the post-election period,” he emphasised, adding “FDI may total around $3 billion this fiscal year.”

In the previous fiscal year 2016-17, the country had received $2.73 billion in FDI.

Unilever Pakistan CEO Shazia Syed said “we have been part of Pakistan’s growth for nearly 70 years, during which time we have seen our business grow to over 30 brands…we take pride that over 95% of our brands are produced locally, creating employment for thousands, contributing to the exchequer and simultaneously creating a better future every day for the people of Pakistan.”
Riaz Haq said…
No material impact expected if Pakistan included in FATF grey list: Moody's

https://www.geo.tv/latest/187415-no-material-impact-expected-if-pakistan-included-in-fatf-grey-list-moodys

Moody's does not expect Pakistan's inclusion in the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) grey list to have a material impact on its external financing.

Pakistan had perviously been included in the list between 2012 and 2015 but managed to negotiate when its entered into an IMF program.

Moody's does not anticipate any disruptions on borrowing from multilateral sources.

The credit ratings service noted that a strong domestic demand was increasing pressure on Pakistan's external account while external borrowing accounted for a significant portion of Pakistan's debts.

Pakistan's current account deficit has widened driven by a large increase in the good deficit, which is higher due to China-Pakistan Economic Corridor-related (CPEC) capital goods imports.

Moody's noted brighter prospects were expected from exports and remittances, where rising oil prices were likely to translate into a higher remittance inflow from GCC countries.

Exports are expected to rise considering most energy related projects under CPEC were nearing completion and the resulting energy suplly would play a role in boosting production activity.

Given that foreign reserves dipped to a thirty-four month low of $12.1 billion; the State Bank of Pakistan had 2.5 months of import cover on a three month rolling basis, below the IMF's minimum adequacy guideline.

On Pakistan's economy, Moody's noted that the country's economy has maintained its solid momentum through the first half of FY2018. Economic growth has been supported by the ongoing recovery in the agricultural sector, according to the rating agency.

Moody's noted positive signs in the form of an increase in credit disbursements and more favourable weather conditions, robust activity in large-scale manufacturing owing to improved energy availability and capacity expansions.

In light of domestic factors and ongoing investments related to CPEC will likely result in strong growth, Moody's noted, expecting a GDP growth of 5.5 percent for FY2018.

The ratings agency does not anticipate the central bank to aggressively raise rates ahead of the upcoming general elections.
Riaz Haq said…
Pakistan is About to Get a $7 Billion Infusion and 1,000 New Garment Plants to Revive its Textile Industry
by Sabrina Bovell
Posted on March 12, 2018 in Financial, News

https://sourcingjournalonline.com/aptma-invest-7-billion-pakistan-textile-industry/

Pakistan and its textile sector have been facing challenging times in recent years, owed in part to costs of production increasing at a pace faster than its neighboring competitors, but a new infusion of funds could help get the country back on better footing.

The All Pakistan Textile Mills Association (APTMA) announced that its members have a plan to increase investment in Pakistan’s textile industry by establishing 1,000 garment manufacturing plants with a total of $7 billion in investments, according to Pakistan’s The Express Tribune.

The plan is to set up garment plants near major textile producing cities like Lahore, Sheikhupura, Faisalabad, Kasur, Multan, Sialkot, Rawalpindi, Karachi and Peshawar, with the plants installing half a million stitching machines, which will boost annual production to 3 billion pieces.

Pakistan’s textile industry has experienced decreasing investments over the last decade, as potential investors have been hesitant to make new investment due to high business costs. This has caused the sector to miss out on technological advantages to its competitors.

New investments dropped to more than half a billion rupees ($4.52 million) in 2016-17, compared to 1 billion rupees ($9 million) in 2005-06, the Tribune said citing APTMA. Further, currently about 35 percent of the textile industry’s production capacity was damaged, causing loss of approximately $4.14 billion worth of potential exports.

Once the proposal is implemented, the industry will need an additional 10.3 million bales of raw cotton, 345 million kilograms of manmade fiber, 1.98 billion kilograms of additional yarn and an additional 7.93 billion square meters of processed fiber. However, cotton-producing area and cotton production have decreased 30 percent and 38 percent, respectively, in Punjab since 2011.

Although the textile sector performed poorly overall, readymade garments did show reasonable growth. According to the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics, exports of readymade garments registered 5.55% year-on-year growth against the overall flat growth of the textile sector, which stood at $12.45 billion in 2016-17.

APTMA members has reportedly provided the government with a long list of corrective and conducive policy measure demands in return for their investments, including implementation of long-term policies, like consistent nationwide energy prices, removal of 3.50 rupees (3 cents) per kilowatt hour surcharge on electricity tariff, an extension of the duty drawback scheme for five years and drawbacks to be increased every year by 1 percent for garments (up to 12 percent) and made-ups (up to 10 percent) against realization of export proceeds.

The proposal also suggested the government allow LTFF (long-term financing facility) to indirect exports, Islamic financing and building of infrastructure for garment plants.
Riaz Haq said…
#Nigeria tops India with 87 million Nigerians in extreme #poverty exceeding #India’s 73 million. Rapid poverty reduction in #Asia fueled by the high rates of income per capita growth in India, #Indonesia, #Bangladesh, the #Philippines, #China and #Pakistan. https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/india-no-longer-home-to-the-largest-no-of-poor-study/articleshow/64754988.cms

The benchmark projections of poverty by country imply a high speed of poverty reduction in South Asia, East Asia and the Pacific, fuelled by the high rates of income per capita growth in India, Indonesia, Bangladesh, the Philippines, China and Pakistan, the study says. It showed global income increases in the last decades have led to systematic decreases in poverty rates worldwide, with the experience in India and China having played the most important role when it comes to the overall number of persons escaping absolute poverty.
Riaz Haq said…
#Pakistan: Beyond the stereotypes: Rural #women in colorful attires, girls learning boxing, countryside kids playing #football on a dusty street, tribal men learning English, rare #Asian rhino, vibrantly painted rickshaws that show rich #culture

http://bit.ly/2m19ywg

Rural women in multi-coloured attire, young girls learning boxing, traditional kushti (wrestling) matches, countryside kids playing football on a dusty street, tribal men learning the English language, a girl from Gilgit-Baltistan playing Rubab (a lute-like musical instrument), the rare Asian one-horned rhino, vibrantly painted rickshaws that are emblems of a cultural richness ... these are images of Pakistan so rarely seen in mainstream media dominated as it is by narrow narratives of violence, strife and politics that it drove a Pakistani freelance photojournalist to do something about overturning the stereotypes.
“All you hear about Pakistan in the news is about terrorism, politics or poverty. But the Pakistan I know and live in is more than that. Pakistan is full of colours, smiles and diversity,” Saleem told Gulf News. And then last February, as he scrolled through his Instagram feed, he came across a cascade of images from a city that was on the other side of the border, in India. The Everyday Mumbai project that was all about capturing quotidian glimpses of the bustling megapolis.
“I was so inspired by the Everyday Mumbai project and its creator Chirag Wakaskar that I contacted the global community of Everyday Projects to start a similar project for Pakistan,” he said. Thus was born Everyday Pakistan.


Everyday Projects is a photography education non-profit and a collective of Instagram feeds which represents more than 50 countries. Its mission, according to the website, is to use photography “to challenge stereotypes that distort our understanding of the world.” The collective audience of Everyday Projects is over 1 million now.


Everyday Pakistan launched early this year with Saleem as the founder/curator with the assistance of a fellow writer, Anushe Noor. What started as a one-man mission to challenge stereotypes about his homeland now boasts nearly 58,000 followers on Instagram with a significant following on other social media platforms. “Everyday Pakistan is transforming negative perceptions, one photo at a time,” Saleem said.
The Instagram account offers a kaleidoscopic view of Pakistan’s innumerable wealth in terms of its people, cultures, natural resources, traditions and way of life.

From the fascinating shots of St. Patrick’s Cathedral in Karachi, Buddha statues at the Bhamala Stupa near Khanpur, shrine of Sufi Saint Hazrat Ali Hajvery in Lahore, Shri Naval Mandir Narayanpura Hindu Temple in Karachi, and a portrait of 55-year-old Pakistani Sikh from Gurdwara Punja Sahib in Hassan Abdal, Everyday Pakistan brings to light the stunning cultural and religious diversity in Pakistan.
The most popular post was of a young man offering prayer in the caves of Quetta which received more than 130,000 likes.
During Ramadan and Eid, he received many requests from all over the world to share more photos of the festival as people were curious to learn more about Pakistan.
Through the online photo documentary project, Saleem also aims to provide a platform to local photographers to promote photojournalism in Pakistan and build a community of storytellers by giving viewers an honest insight into Pakistan.
A shared sense of history

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