LAHORE-The Lahore Chamber of Commerce & Industry on Friday welcomed easing of lockdown for a certain time and urged the government to also allow businesses to shopping malls and mega departmental stores.

In a statement, LCCI President Irfan Iqbal Sheikh, Senior Vice President Ali Hussam Asghar and Vice President Mian Zahid Jawaid Ahmad said that Prime Minister Imran Khan has taken wise decision as stress in trade and industry was at peak and business community was facing severe financial crunch due to lockdown and halt to the trade and economic activities in the country.

They said that ease in lockdown would reduce the financial miseries of shopkeepers and small traders. They said that government should also open shopping malls and mega departmental stores as they were also in a deep trouble. They should be allowed to start working with Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) as they were bearing all expenses without businesses.

“Shopping malls and mega departmental stores should be allowed to open for limited timings as they are on the verge of collapse”, they said. They said that business community was the backbone of the economy and playing a great role in providing employment to the people and revenue to the government.

They said that allowing working for a limited time would be a great favor and it would enable them to face the economic challenges.

They also appealed to the masses to follow the SOPs to control the spread of COVID–19. They said that coronavirus has already caused a huge loss to the country and it cannot bear more.

People should take safety measures by themselves, not only to save their lives but for further ease in lockdown, they said.