LAHORE - The Lahore Chamber of Commerce & Industry on Monday called for restructuring of loss-making public sector enterprises (PSEs) to control heavy loss to the national exchequer.

LCCI President Ijaz A. Mumtaz said that though “salvage plan” was well on the way as far as Pakistan Railways and Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) were concerned but situation in the other PSEs was quite disappointing.

He said that keeping in view the massive loss of around Rs.600 billion annually being caused by the Public Sector Enterprises (PSEs) government should take measures on war footing to make these organizations profitable or go for the option of privatization.

He said that in the advanced economies like the United States, United Kingdom and Japan etc, the role of PSEs is minimal and the private sector is the most important instrument of socio-economic prosperity, and there is continued growth of privately-run corporations.

He said that the significance of PSEs cannot be ignored, in view of the fact that they remain the most employment-intensive and capital-intensive organizations.

The LCCI president suggested formation of a committee of experts from public and private sectors to revisit strategy and adopt methods which provide a new impetus to the PSEs. He said that the committee should go deep into the broader political philosophy and vision under which the PSEs will be required to play their role in the new competitive environment.

He said that PSEs of Pakistan should continue to remain the backbone of the economy therefore their revival is critical to our economic wellbeing. He said that it is trade and industry that help check further decline in our growth rate. He said that it is all the more necessary for the government to increase its efforts for revival of the PSEs. Greater autonomy and non interference in their functioning have to be guaranteed so that the country can fully reap the benefits of PSEs. He said that PSEs are not only industries for short-term economic and commercial gains but are our national assets.