Chairman of National Business Group Pakistan, President Pakistan Businessmen and Intellectuals Forum, All Karachi Industrial Alliance, and former provincial minister Mian Zahid Hussain said on Friday that the uncertainty is ending quickly after the staff-level agreement with the IMF. The public and investors have breathed a sigh of relief, and the situation will improve further, with Pakistan getting $1.1 billion after the lender board ratifies the deal, he said.
Mian Zahid Hussain said that taking advantage of the respite from this agreement, all the necessary reforms should be implemented without delay to correct the economy’s direction.
Talking to the business community, the veteran business leader said that reforms have become necessary as the country’s debt burden has increased greatly, and inflation is also high, which has troubled the people.
The business leader said that the government’s financial condition is improving, and IPPs have been paid 140 billion rupees, which has reduced the concerns of investors in this sector and improved the overall situation.
Meanwhile, coal is becoming cheaper globally, reducing the production cost of all coal-using sectors, including power plants and cement manufacturers.
The industries using coal should pass on the benefit of reduced prices to the masses without delay, he said, adding that coal prices have come down by 77 percent since March 2022.
He noted that reducing power tariffs will relieve the masses and business community, while cheaper cement will activate the construction sector.
Mian Zahid Hussain said that due to the reduction in foreign loans, the government has decided to borrow 11 trillion rupees locally during July, August, and September to run the country.
This will increase the debt burden and the cost of debt servicing from 7000 billion rupees to 9000 billion rupees.
Mian Zahid Hussain said there is an urgent need to privatise failed government institutions, increase the tax base and eliminate power losses to save Pakistan from economic collapse.