ISLAMABAD (News Desk): Prime Minister Imran Khan on Tuesday promised that 2020 would be the year of jobs and housing facilities for deserving people and said it was his government mission to construct homes for low-income groups of society. “Before this, the government system was a bit slow but now we have taken off and 2020 will be the year of jobs, housing and improving of growth rate,” Mr Khan announced while addressing a ceremony for distribution of cheques of interest-free loan among the applicants who want to construct houses under Rs5 billion Prime Minister’s Low-Cost Housing Scheme. Mr Khan vowed that as the income of government would increase, more funding would be available for housing, education and provision of justice to the poor people. He said non-existence of foreclosure laws was one of the main hurdles in housing financing by banks. This facility was the world’s lowest in Pakistan, he said. “Banks in India finance 10 per cent of total housing, it is 30 per cent in Malaysia, 80 per cent in Europe and UK and only 0.2 per cent in Pakistan,” he added. He said a case regarding foreclosure law was pending in a court and the government was waiting for its decision for over one year. “We are waiting for the court’s decision for one and quarter year but I am hopeful that this law will be enforced in the country soon,” he added. The foreclosure law provides the means for a mortgage lender to take possession of and sell a home when the borrower has defaulted on the loan. Mr Khan said besides allocating hefty amount for the health, education, justice and housing sectors, it was the mission of the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf government to construct homes for low-income group of society. He then directed the Ministry of Housing and Works to expedite the pace of work on the low-cost housing scheme. Under the PM’s scheme, interest-free loans will be disbursed through M/s Akhuwat Microfinance among the deserving low-income applicants who own up to 250-square-yard plots. Each successful applicant can use up to Rs1m loan to construct, renovate or upgrade houses, additional rooms, bathroom and kitchen. Again presenting his concept of the state of Madina, PM Khan said it was duty of his government to support the vulnerable segments of society and the biggest quality of a civilized society was that it worked for downtrodden segments of the society. The prime minister appreciated Akhuwat Microfinance for providing interest-free loans to low-income people for the construction of houses. Mr Khan said the previous systems had only benefited the elite class of society in the past. “Unfortunately, such kind of system was introduced in Pakistan where the elites were enjoying all things while there was nothing for the common man.” He said it was top most priority of the government to create resources and job opportunities for the people, particularly poor. The construction of five million housing units would provide job opportunities to millions of people besides boosting 40 other industries directly linked with the housing sector, he said. “The government is launching three mega projects in the country and one of them has been launched in Islamabad and the amount received from Blue Area multibillion rupees commercial project would be spent on providing housing units and flats to residents of slums,” the PM pledged. The PPP has chided the prime minister for, what it calls, giving lollipop to the nation every month instead of coming up with solid steps to ameliorate the sufferings of the poor. “The selected prime minister gives a new lollipop to the people each month by promising a new imaginary project for creating jobs,” PPP Punjab Information Secretary Syed Hassan Murtaza said in reference to Prime Minister Imran Khan’s claim of creating jobs through forests. “Neither the gimmicks of Imran Niazi end nor is there a limit to his false promises and claims.” The PPP leader claimed that the person, who occupied power through rigging, had begun deceiving the nation, as he first claimed to reform the national economy through donations and providing employment opportunities to the people.