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What is Economic Planning? Elaborate how socio-economic and cultural obstacle stand in the way of steady development in Pakistan?

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What is Economic Planning?

“Economic planning is the process of conceiving, regulating and controlling the economic activity by the states to achieve the pre-determined objective in accordance with pre-fixed priorities”.
“The process of conceiving, regulating, and controlling economics activity by the state according to set priorities with a view to achieving well-defined objectives during a given a period of time.”
“The Process of deciding what to do and how to do”.

Obstacles of economic development in Pakistan

Pakistan got an exhausted and weakened economic base in legacy. Since partition, the govt. of Pakistan has been making their best to achieve economic prosperity but for several reasons, these efforts proved to be rather wasteful. This has created social tension in the country. However, the main obstacles which have affected the rate of growth in the country are grouped under the following headings:
  1. Economics Obstacles
  2. Social and cultural obstacles
  3. Administrative Obstacles


  1. Economics obstacles:

People of Pakistan are poor and backward not because of deficiency of resources but due to the inefficient use of the factors of production. These problems are discussed as under:

Under-utilization of Natural Resources

Pakistan is not poor in resources. The obstacle to development is not the inadequacy of natural resources but non-utilization and underutilization of natural resources.

Deficiency of capital

If a country has to achieve rapid economic development, it must save at least 15% of GNP each year but in Pakistan rate of saving is b/w 5-7% of GNP which is hardly able to maintain per capita income.

The scarcity of foreign exchange

Pakistan export cotton, carpets, and manual labor, etc. So the fluctuations in the internal market, deterioration in terms of trade, the quota system have decreased the foreign earnings. The increase in the prices of the foreign goods and their rising flow in the country are the major causes of the decrease in foreign exchange resources.

Rapidly growing population

A rapid increase in population is a great burden on the meager (unsatisfactory small) resources of the country and a big obstacle in economic development.

Low level of technology

The present condition of technology in Pakistan is insufficient according to the modern changes. So it should be improved according to the modern developments and changes.

Dualistic economy

Dualism (having two parts) is another important obstacle to economic developmental Pakistan. Different people living in the different parts of the country are using different technologies or in other words, the use of technology differs from region to region and from sector to sector. In this way, due to dualism, the suitable utilization of the resources does not occur.

2. Social and cultural obstacles:

-The Socio-cultural obstacle may be categorized as

Low literacy rate

The literacy rate o Pakistan is very low; it is 47% (2005-Encarta Encyclopedia) but the UN is hardly able to accept is as 10%. The illiterate people are ignorant of the development changes in their country. They even don’t cooperate with the govt. for their better economic planning that is why most of the plans have been rendered fruitless. They feel pride in the native culture and are generally not receptive to a new foreign method of production.


Spendthrift nature of people

Majority of the people are extravagant. The unnecessary expenditures on marriages, death. And births circumcisions, banquets, etc has reduced the domestic savings and has adversely affected the economic progress. More than half of the population consists of womenfolk. The pity is that their guardians don’t let them come and work openly but they themselves waste the income on luxuries, etc.

3. Administrative Obstacles:

Administrative obstacles are the major factors that are tugging heavily upon the economic growth of the country. These are as under:

Political instability

Pakistan has always been facing the political problems and faced long dictatorships/Martial laws. This situation created all the time a critical environment. One govt. does not let continue the development schemes of the previous govt. In short each govt. launched its own schemes but did not follow it to the end which resulted obviously in ‘no development’. The history of planning shows that with the exception of the 2nd five-year plan, all other plans have failed to achieve their results.

Malpractices and Corruption

The administrative machinery in Pakistan is overall bureaucratic. The working efficiency of the person is weak; they are disloyal, unfaithful and less sympathetic. Malpractices in the collection of revenues, taxes, and all such things are common. The corruption among the implementations of the economic development plan in every sector of the community has played havoc with assets of national.

No defined Economic System

Another administrative obstacle is in the way of economic development is that the nation has not yet decided that what economics should be in the country. Either Islamic or socialistic; either mixed or capitalistic, etc.
For Correction and Improvements please use the comments section below.

Naeem Javid Muhammad Hassani is working as Conservator of Forests in Balochistan Forest & Wildlife Department (BFWD). He is the CEO of Tech Urdu ( Forestrypedia (, All Pak Notifications (, Essayspedia, etc & their YouTube Channels). He is an Environmentalist, Blogger, YouTuber, Developer & Vlogger.

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