President Pakistan Businessmen and Intellectuals Forum (PBIF), President All Karachi Industrial Alliance (AKIA), Senior Vice Chairman of the Businessmen Panel of FPCCI and former provincial minister, Mian Zahid Hussain has said that Prime Minister Imran Khan’s announcement of package for the economy which is in trouble due to global recession, double-digit interest rates and coronavirus is commendable.

Talking to business community on Monday, Mian Zahid Hussain said that the package should be according to the ground realities and aspirations of the masses as well as the business community which has pinned high hopes on the Premier.

He said that the pandemic has spread across 192 countries prompting different countries to cut interest rates and announce economic stimulus.

The President PBIF demanded free medical treatment for all those affected from the coronavirus pandemic in the country.

He said that interest rates should be brought down to zero as long as the crisis lasts while the SME sector and traders should also be given loans on zero interest for the next six months.

The veteran business leader noted that the government should announce an Rs100 billion package for the SMEs and traders enabling them to pay salaries of staff while utility bills should be waived off for the next three months.

He further stated that daily wagers should be provided aid for the next three months through Ehsas programme while the demurrage, container and late clearance changes for the importers and exporters should be waived.

The workers in the corporate sector should be compensated through EOBI, WWB and Employees Social Security Institution and turnover tax and corporate tax should be reduced, he added.

The corporate sector should be given a 25 percent discount in the energy bills, Mian Zahid said, adding that all the proposals are implementable as the government has saved billions of dollars in oil import bill and other heads while some other countries and international institutions has also committed aid, he said.