Business community demands new, effective trade policy

President Pakistan Businessmen and Intellectuals Forum (PBIF), President All Karachi Industrial Alliance (AKIA), Senior Vice Chairman of the Businessmen Panel of FPCCI and Former Provincial Minister Mian Zahid Hussain on Monday said the government should announce new trade policy after consultation with the private sector. The current and former trade policies only wasted time and money of the government and damaged economy as it was not according to the ground realities, he said.

Mian Zahid Hussain said that four trade policies have been announced in the last eight years and all of them failed to produce positive results, therefore, a new policy is direly needed. He said that want of manpower and funds also hamper implementation of the trade policy for which the commerce ministry should not be left subservient to the finance or any other ministry. The exports of competing nations continue to grow while Pakistan’s exports have fallen by over five billion dollars in few years which our economy cannot withstand.

The policy of blocking refunds and squeezing industry to boost tax collection has also damaged the competitiveness of our export industry which should be reconsidered, he demanded. The Business Leader noted that government focuses on enhancing the traditional exports while ignoring new markets, new products, innovation and value-addition which is the situation in the international market. He said that FTA with China has damaged our economy while all the trade deals failed to boost exports but triggered imports by 300 percent damaging economy. Hitting industrial sector to boost collection on the cost of production and exports is a failed recipe of the IMF which must be abandoned, he said.

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