ME tensions pose a threat to global economic recovery: Mian Zahid Hussain.

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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 Wednesday that Middle East tensions pose a risk to the recovery of the global economy. A new economic whirlpool has seized the world and can impact billions of people; therefore, the superpowers must resolve the problem without delay, he said.

Mian Zahid Hussain said that an increasing number of people are losing faith in the global political system, which should be noticed. Talking to the business community, the veteran business leader said that Yemeni militants had already affected the shipping sector, and business costs had increased.

Now, the whole Middle East is in trouble. If tensions are allowed to escalate, oil and gas prices will skyrocket, affecting all oil and gas-importing countries, and their people will have to bear the brunt of further inflation.

The business leader said that there is anxiety in the whole world due to the Israeli aggression and its undue support by Western countries. He added that people are protesting, and their confidence in the international system is badly affected.

In these circumstances, the superpowers must take steps to normalise the situation and prevent Israel from committing further atrocities in Gaza; otherwise, militancy will flourish.

Mian Zahid Hussain said that Pakistani policymakers should also monitor the situation and plan to protect the people from the possible effects of this tension.

The majority of Pakistanis are already very worried about inflation and unemployment and are not able to bear any more burden.

He further said that the lives of the poor people were already tough, and now the government has increased the prices of petroleum products, which has added to their problems.

The government is already collecting a levy of Rs. 60 per litre on petrol and diesel and a tax of around Rs. 82. Due to the increase in oil prices, the purchasing power of the people has been further reduced, while transportation has become more expensive.

Reforming the electricity and gas sectors would eliminate the losses and relieve people who are worried about inflation. He demanded that failing government institutions be privatised immediately to save around eight billion dollars annually.

A good wheat crop has resulted in reduced prices of flour and bread and a reduction in the price has been noted, which is welcome, he said.

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