PESHAWAR                 -            Sarhad Chamber of Commerce and Industry President Engr Maqsood Anwar Pervaiz on Thursday appealed to the government to defer electricity and gas bills of industrial and commercial consumers for at least three months.

Addressing a joint meeting of industrialists, traders and shopkeepers via video link here, the SCCI chief appreciated the government for deferring the payment of electricity and gas bills of domestic consumers for next three months, which would definitely give relief to the coronavirus hit poor masses.  Maqsood Pervaiz said the industrial and commercial activities had been completely suspended due to the lockdown imposed in the country as a precautionary step to contain the spread of novel coronavirus.

He said the business community was facing financial challenges and other issues due to halt of industrial and commercial activities, and urged the government to defer payment of their electricity and gas bills, and their payment in  installments.

The SCCI president also urged he government to exempt small traders from all federal and provincial taxes immediately, besides granting them interest-free loans. The rents of district government and Auqaf properties should also be waived off for at least one year, he demanded.