ISLAMABAD - Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICCI) has called for constituting a think tank with the public-private partnership to evolve strategies for the economic development of the country.
Government through continued dialogue process with the participation of public and private sector representatives must evolve concrete solutions for sustainable development, said icci President Yassar Sakhi Butt while addressing a ceremony.
He was of the view that the business community and the general public have gone under great stress due to shortage and acceleration of prices of electricity, gas and petroleum products, whereas sky rocketing prices of daily use items have made life of the common man miserable. At this critical situation, the government should react fast to save the country from going into more troubles and should start a thorough consultation process with all stakeholders, he maintained.
Yassar Sakhi Butt said that through formation of think-tank with public private partnership, solution of a number of problems could be found. He said that researchers, chamber’s representatives, academia representatives and policy makers must be part of it, which should meet on regular basis to achieve the given tasks.
He said that Government should learn lesson, specifically from China, which as per available figures is expecting to become the world largest economy by 2018. On contrary, our economy was showing unstable trends after even 66 years of its independence, he added.
icci President said that the current business environment presents a depressing outlook and has stopped the process of industrialization and investments in many sectors. Government must develop strong coordination with a businessman to boost up their moral and confidence, announcing and implementing a sustainable and long-term policies, he stressed.
He said that Islamabad Chamber has developed its own think tank , which is working on core issues of national importance to give concrete solution to the government.
NNI adds: Automation is the only way to ensure trade facilitation and bring country out of fiscal mess, Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI) said Saturday.
Government is facing a revenue shortfall of around 30 billion while inflows from Coalition Support Fund and 3G auction remains doubtful, said Tariq Mahmood, Chairman FPCCI Standing Committees on Pharmaceuticals and Law and Order.
The worrisome situation may deteriorate further until automation is introduced which can help put economy back on track, he said.
Talking to women entrepreneurs at Islamabad Women’s Chamber of Commerce and Industry (IWCCI), he said that movement of goods should be improved to reduce cost, maximise efficiency, and boost forex reserves as well as tax collections.
Tariq Mahmood, who is also President Attock Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI), said rollback of Pakistan Automated Customs Computerised System (PaCCS) has complicated the overall process hurting business community and tax collections.
He said that reintroduction of semiautomatic and manual clearance procedures was a blow to the trade facilitation efforts which is resulting in delays, penalties, lost business opportunities and reduced competitiveness.
Improvement of transport infrastructure, eradication of corruption, modernization of customs administration, removal of non-tariff trade barriers, and other operational improvements should feature high on government’s agenda to boost economic activity, he demanded.
At the occasion, Samina Fazil, founder President IWCCI, said that she is receiving complaints from importers after PaCCS was replaced with faulty Web Based One Customs (WeBOC).
The undependable software installed on terminals will pave way for losses, illegal payments and frauds, she said.
Samina Fazil said that collection is mainly based on imports and exports which must be facilitated.
Total revenues have fallen from 18 per cent of the GDP to 10 per cent during last two decades which shows that efforts to improve taxation and collections have backfired, she said.
FBR continues to shift burden to poor, all measures remained figure-oriented and the fiscal deficit may cross Rs 1800 billion this year, said Samina.
Absence of automation will lead to lack of transparency and the collectors will continue to milk the poor to realize unrealistic targets, she said.