ISLAMABAD - The Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI) on Sunday voiced concern over the sudden erosion in the exchange rate and termed it unacceptable .

FPCCI Horticulture Exports Regional Chairman Ahmad Jawad said that the local currency has nosedived after remaining stable for three and a half years and now a US dollar is being sold at Rs107.25 in the open market which has created uncertainty, it said.

Jawad asked the departments concerned to take immediate steps to stabilise exchange rate and take action against the elements who are trying to exploit the current politically uncertain environment. He said that fall of the rupee will not improve exports and it will not help authorities tackle record trade deficit. Export policy should be adjusted to improve export competitiveness leaving exchange rate unchanged as it will damage masses by making imports costly and stoking inflation.

Jawad said that the uncertainty has hit importers and exporters and masses while many currency dealers exploiting the situation which calls for intervention by authorities.

Masses should not be made to pay the price for wrong economic decisions and failure of the export sector, he demanded.

"Our export sector has lost competitiveness due to lack of support and it is addicted to subsidies, tax breaks, bailouts, and currency devaluation," he observed. He predicted the situation will lead the next government to borrow more to stabilise forex reserves which will be economic suicide.

APP