The Progressive Group presented a seven-point charter of demand to solve the country’s economic problems.

Lahore (Muhammad Yasir)  Progressive group comprising members of the Lahore Chamber of Commerce & Industry (LCCI) on Monday presented a seven-point charter of demand to end the ongoing economic instability due to ongoing political tug of war the country and advised all stakeholders to join hands in this regard. Among all the sectors of the country, the business sector is the most affected by the current uncertainty and political instability.

Addressing a press conference at the Lahore Press Club, President of the Progressive Group and executive members of Lahore Chamber, Khalid Usman, Muhammad Arshad Chaudhry, Abdul Dud Alvi and Muhammad Ijaz Tanveer said that due to the increasing prices of commodities globally and skyrocketing input cost has made doing business extremely difficult. The global appreciation of the dollar and the depreciating value of the rupee have made imported raw material and finished goods very expensive. All these factors have adversely affected the working capital of the business class and hence reducing their business volume.

It is reducing the productivity of the country, increasing inflation for the common man and losing jobs, they added. They said that these conditions require that all the stakeholders of the country come together and realize that political and economic independence of the country is possible only if Pakistan is economically stable. While economic stability is possible only if trade and industrialization are promoted in the country. To achieve economic stability and prosperity, Progressive Group is presenting a 7-point Charter of Demand which included steps to end the ongoing political uncertainty in the country. The State Bank should be enabled to protect the value of the rupee from artificial fluctuations.

The interest rate in the country should be kept in single digit. Consultation with the country’s representative business organizations should be made mandatory before any economic decision. Incentives given to the export sector should not be reduced but should be increased. Super tax imposed on industrial sector and big tax payers should be abolished. To reduce fiscal deficit PSDP should be reduced and loss making PSE should be given to private sector and electricity, gas prices should be fixed for six months to reduce business / production cost. Dr Riaz Ahmed, Haji Riaz Al Hasan, Ali Imran, Mohsin Bashir and Chaudhry Shafiq were also present in the press conference.