Past 2 years termed challenging for business community

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By Asad Cheema

ISLAMABAD: President Pakistan Businessmen and Intellectuals Forum and All Karachi Industrial Alliance and former provincial minister Mian Zahid Hussain on Wednesday said last two years were very challenging for the government, masses, and the business community.
Now the economic situation is improving but the food crisis needs to be tackled to shield masses from further problems, he said. Mian Zahid Hussain said that despite the gloomy projections of IMF, World Bank, ADB, and other institutions the remittances are increasing but it may not last for long.
Talking to the business community, the veteran business leader said that now textile sector is getting orders. Consumption of electricity, petrol, diesel, fertilizer and cement is increasing while realty and stock market
are getting better for which credit goes to the smart lockdown policy of the Prime Minister.
He noted the inflation is increasing and the promise of reforms in the FBR and other institutions could not be fulfilled. Rs148 billion were distributed among poor, interest rates were reduced, the industrial sector
was financed while loan repayment was relaxed which helped masses and the business community, he added.
Current account deficit and value of rupee was reduced and circular debt was increased during the last two years worrying investors, he said. The business leader said that global institutions have warned about a global
recession and a food crisis for which the government needs to be prepared.
During the last two years decisions taken in the name of reforms harassed the business community, polarised politicians and destroyed the credibility of NAB which indicate that no reforms are better than bad or half-hearted reforms.
He said that the government should improve cotton yield, taxes should be reduced for the ginning sector, industries should get gas, load shedding should be reduced, energy prices should be cut, the business of Hajj, Umra, travel agents and restaurants should be revived so that they can play their role in national development.