This insightful analysis into the prevailing economic situation in Pakistan has three distinguishing features. It is an exhaustive, analytical history of economic development in Pakistan during the last seventy years; it provides an explanation of Pakistan’s economic performance in the political context, and compares it with other South Asian countries and with East Asia; it outlines for Pakistan an agenda of economic and social reforms based on a model of shared growth to see the country into the twenty-first century.
The main thrust of the book is that the respective roles of the state and the market have been reversed in the case of Pakistan, with the result that the benefits are reaped by the elite class only. This small minority continues to enjoy the unjust accumulation of wealth in the midst of widespread poverty and squalor. The author establishes that such a situation is socially and economically not sustainable.
Ishrat Husain is presently Adviser to the Prime Minister on Institutional Reforms and Austerity. During 2016–17, he was Public Policy Fellow at the Woodrow Wilson Center in Washington DC. He has served as Dean and Director, Institute of Business Administration (IBA), Karachi (2008–16); Chairman, National Commission for Government Reforms (2006–08); and Governor, State Bank of Pakistan (1999–2005). Dr Husain has also had a distinguished career at the World Bank for over two decades (1979–1999). He has a Master’s in Development Economics from Williams College and a PhD in Economics from Boston University. He is a graduate of the Executive Development programme jointly sponsored by Harvard, Stanford, and INSEAD.Dr Husain has received the highest civilian awards, the Nishan-e-Pakistan (2016) and the Hilal-e-Imtiaz (2003). His other publications include Governing the Ungovernable (OUP 2018), Economic Management in Pakistan 1999–2002 (OUP 2003), and Pakistan: The Economy of an Elitist State (OUP 1999).