Pakistan is South Asia’s most urbanized country. However, there are concerns with the concept of urbanization and other challenges linked with the experience of urbanization. As stated in the original study, the fundamental problem is that the census data lacks a precise definition of urbanization. The census uses an extremely restricted definition of “urban,” Everything else is presumed to be rural. As a result, the population living in cities is grossly underestimated. Rather than depending on evidence-based research, the census, especially after 1981, refers to administrative borders. According to projections from academics, our urban population might be as high as 50%. In Pakistan, it is critical to rethink the idea of urbanization, as it is a primary driver of political change. Through political involvement and the exercise of political rights, the phenomenon of urbanization determines the relationship between the state and its citizens. It’s also significant from resource allocation and revenue base estimation. Also learn about the Nova City Islamabad.
Economic Growth and Inequality
As per the United Nations Development Program, Pakistan has the highest rate of urbanization in South Asia, with 36.4 percent of the population living in cities. According to the United Nations, about half of the country’s population will be living in cities by 2025. Cities are projected to create around 80% of the global gross domestic product (GDP). Cities in Pakistan account for 55 percent of the country’s GDP. In comparison to rural areas, multidimensional poverty in cities is often lower. Inequality of income and limited access to mobility and resources such as water, job opportunities, and housing, on the other hand, are becoming increasingly problematic in every major city in the country. The government’s and city planners’ emphasis on economic expansion exacerbates the problems. Get the idea from Rudn enclave.
Karachi is the world’s only megacity without a mass public transportation system. Meanwhile, it is predicted that private transportation costs have climbed by more than 100% since 2000. Those who can’t commute are forced to dwell in haphazard inner-city areas. Increased classified transportation on capital roadways has resulted in noteworthy gridlock. Many urban roadways have been upgraded due to the government’s answer. However, in Pakistan, infrastructure for the most prevalent means of transportation, such as pedestrian paths and bicycle lanes, either does not exist or has been encroached upon. Even though walking accounts for 40% of all journeys in Lahore, Women’s mobility in urban Pakistan is likewise limited. According to an ADB report, about 85% of working women in Karachi were harassed in 2015. Learn about the Kingdom Valley.
While urban populations have better overall health and nutrition than rural populations, child mortality and malnutrition indicators suggest that Pakistan’s urban poor have just marginally better health than the rural poor. Improved accessibility to private health care in cities explains better health outcomes in cities. However, except immunization, essential public health services are underutilized in metropolitan areas. Pollution induced by fast urbanization has a direct impact on poor health outcomes.
As to the WHO, Karachi is Pakistan’s most polluted metropolis, with air twice as dirty as Beijing. Pollution levels in Punjab’s most significant cities are three to four times higher than UN safety standards.
Despite senior student enrollment and better learning outcomes in municipal areas, about 10% of all children in Lahore, Karachi, and Peshawar stay out of school. The private sector, like healthcare, explains why cities have better education. Between 2001 and 2014, the percentage of children enrolled in urban private schools increased from 25% to 40%. Furthermore, there appears to be an inverse link between public education and the size of a city. Approximately 35% of all students aged 5 to 9 are enrolled in government schools in small cities. In capital cities, the percentage reduces to 22%. The continued demand for private schools in metropolitan areas indicates the low quality of government institutions. While all private schools have basic amenities (drinking water and bathrooms), only about 12% of government schools in Lahore have these.
The realization of agglomeration economies is one of the numerous sound effects of urbanization. The “unintended benefits” of employees and businesses cluster near one another in metropolitan regions, resulting in job creation and productivity, notably in the manufacturing and service industries. In terms of policy, Pakistan’s Vision 2025 places a high value on cities as the primary focus of national strategy to achieve inclusive and long-term economic growth.