RAWALPINDI

The Rawalpindi Chamber of Commerce and Industry is going to organise two-day All Pakistan Chambers Presidents Conference (APCPC) on January 18-19 at Bhurban, Murree.

This was announced by President RCCI Mian Humayun Parvez at a press conference held at Chamber here on Tuesday.

Addressing the press conference, RCCI president said that it was an honor and legacy for RCCI that it has been organizing this event for the last 7 years on regular basis. The major aim of this conference was to develop a common platform for all chambers and trade associations to raise economic issues at national level, providing suggestions/recommendations to the government related to trade policy, business environment and all issues affecting businesses directly or indirectly, he added.

President Mian Humayun Parvez said that All Pakistan Chamber’s Presidents Conference was the most appropriate platform to raise economic issues and talk about the business community’s concerns. He said that the proposed agenda highlights for the upcoming conference includes, trade policy 2015-2018, specific tax reforms, international trade, CPEC, energy shortfall, devolution of ministries and water scarcity.

President RCCI briefed the media about the progress made on the points discussed last year’s APCPC. He said that there are certain areas where government focus was required and efforts should be made to enhance trade between Pakistan and Central Asian countries. Mega projects like CPEC, CASA1000 and TAPI could bring a development revolution in Pakistan, however, a mature approach was required from all stakeholders, he added. The grievances and concerns should be addressed with mutual consent and all efforts should be made to complete the projects in a timely fashion, he urged. Pakistan Stock Exchange could serve a big example for all of us where all stakeholders addressed the related concerns and finally came out with a mutual solution. President RCCI expressed hope that political parties would show maturity and wisdom on CPEC and other big projects and would ease the current uneven situation. He asked government to work on new sectors for exports that includes gems and jewellery and information technology. While investing on mega projects of energy, one must focus on renewable energy resources, like wind, solar and coal, which were cheap and lesser time consuming projects, he informed.

Answering a question related to tax reforms and tax incentives, President RCCI said that it was the Rawalpindi Chamber which initiated the issue of withholding Tax (WHT) and with concerted efforts finally we succeeded to implement an ‘amicable solution’ in the form of voluntary Tax payment scheme.

However, he urged the government to bring more reforms in taxation. There is a need to place a unified tax system across the board, he further added.