LAHORE: Punjab Finance Minister Makhdoom Hashim Jawan Bakht has said there is a need to develop a close liaison with other countries for placement of Pakistani skilled manpower across the world.Addressing a conference held here Thursday, “Employment opportunities for Pakistanis in the Gulf”, organised by Punjab Skills Development Fund, the minister stressed the need of improving the government to government relations for better placement of the skilled graduates across the globe. He was of the view that the next three to five years would be crucial for Pakistan in the backdrop of CPEC projects and establishment of Special Economic Zones (SEZs) in Pakistan so that demand driven workforce could be produced instead of just educating the workforce which remained unemployed. He said the new labour policy was being discussed under establishment of the new SEZs under CPEC projects.The commerce section should conduct survey and inform the foreign office for the demand driven supply of manpower to increase the foreign exchange for Pakistan, the minister stressed. Hashim Jawan said that the use of technology was playing an important role in changing economies so Pakistan needs to utilise it efficiently.The minister appreciated the PSDF skilled graduates but expressed the disappointment with the Technical Education and Vocational Training Authority (Tevta) performance. “The programmes designed by Tevta are not delivering the desired results”, he said. However, unfortunately both in country and abroad Pakistani workforce are not placed well, he added. This means again we are producing graduates who do not have any links with local industries and in international markets.Other participants stressed the need to train the local manpower for better employment opportunities. Director Human Resource and Retail Majid Ahsan Syed said that in many sectors of life Pakistani talent is not available in Gulf countries. “There are still opportunities available in finance and accounting, other areas where Pakistanis may got jobs are hotel management, digital retail and e-commerce”, he said.