Malik Tahir Javaid, President of Employers’ Federation of Pakistan (EFP) has said that the ongoing economic crises have severely impacted the industry of Pakistan which is faced with serious challenges of survivability and sustainability. The increasing cost of energy, shortage of raw materials, high inflation, and depreciating currency are making the cost of doing business very high and resulting in closure and layoff in several industries. He was addressing at a “Bilateral Dialogue on Economic Crises and its Impact on Industry” jointly organized by the EFP and Workers Employers Bilateral Council of Pakistan with the support of International Labour Organization (ILO).
Syed Nazar Ali, Secretary General EFP in his opening remarks, said that the country is going through a difficult phase and the economy of Pakistan is faced with multiple challenges including current account deficit, high inflation, constant low productivity, and low GDP that has created many problems for the industry. “The Bilateral Dialogue between workers and employers was organized to deliberate upon the crises to understand issues and their impact on the industry and the workers to identify and prioritize issues that can be addressed through cooperation.”
Chaudhry Saad, Secretary General WEBCOP Punjab said that the massive unemployment due to the closure and layoff of industries, and the increasing cost of living as a result of crises has made the lives and livelihood of workers very difficult. The non-availability of social protection and the poor performance of social security institutions have added to the miseries of workers. He further said that the conditions demand joint action of workers and employers to protect the industry and to improve the employability and social protection of workers.
Shazad Bukhari, a Consultant, made a comprehensive presentation highlighting the challenges the industry and the workers are facing as a result of economic malaise.
The workers’ and employers’ representatives also shared some of the important challenges and solutions through cooperation including low productivity, low skills and shortage of skilled workforce, lack of innovations in value addition, diversification of product for industry, low wages, lack of social protection, and increasing unemployment for workers. A Committee to prepare evidence-based policy papers suggesting solutions to the problems faced by the industry for submission to the Government was constituted.