Any tax on agriculture should be in "mundi", where all produce should ideally go. The British gave us that system which we ignored and tore down. People who bought "plots" in designated mundies lost their plots to “Katchi Bastees” without compensation. The same is true for the greatest of all the assets left by the British our national canal system. The state of disrepair and neglect is appalling. Under these circumstances, no Agri tax is due to any government. We are however, forced to pay this so called "Jagga", provincial land rental tax, as if Moguls kings are back and they are the rightful owners of all land of Pakistan. S. Amir jhang
Pakistan Steel Mills crisis are deepening further. To make the matters worse, even the banks have refused to give loans to them. The good news is that in order to keep the entity operational, the government has decided to give a loan of Rs6 billion. The problem however, lies in the mismanagement that specifically rose during the tenure of the present government. We sincerely laud the current efforts of the finance minister, Hafeez Sheikh, in granting loan for restructuring to PSM, but now what should be stressed upon is the work on an all-encompassing business plan in order to make up for the huge losses. Syed Abdullah Jan Lahore
Mr Tarin has outlined an extremely pressing issue. Over the years, disparities between the rich and the poor have sharply increased, with the rich getting phenomenally richer and so on. If we trace back the history, we see that recession has affected the rich as well, but they rebounded very strongly from all the downturns. We can say that capitalism to some extent does have the capacity to restore economic balance, if used in the right manner. The economic problem and the uneven distribution of wealth in Pakistan can only be minimised if the middle and lower income groups also participate fully in the economic process instead of relying on the political and strategic institutions.
I personally believe that we have been extremely negligent on the sugar cane front. It is one of the most lucrative crops that we can find in our part of the world but in my humble opinion its utility has not been proper. And it’s not just about the sugarcanes we have been ignoring the agriculture sector for a long time. Agriculture has been our backbone throughout history and unfortunately we have been criminally negligent regarding our backbone. We are hell bent upon implementing the MFN status but as is customary, we are also being insensitive towards the farmers’ concerns. Things need to change, and quick.
With Italy following Greece and Portugal into the quagmire of debt crisis, the fact that China is now being touted as their saviour makes it an interesting little situation. However, reading European press, the most bizarre thing that I found was that the Europeans wanted to dictate how China should proceed in trying to bail out Europe. This clamour has also been echoed by United States of America that is not being able to swallow the pill that China is now the top dog in the global economic matters. Europeans are in a mess and it seems as if only China can help, they should let the global dynamics do the talking if they want to escape the situation.
Bilal Sheikh Lahore
Member of South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation met last week in Maldives for their 17th annual summit. It is pretty evident that India has the hegemony in the South Asian region which is why all the meetings and cooperation between the countries remain fruitless. We are well aware of the fact that the main driving forces in the region are Pakistan and India and until and unless the relationship between both the countries does not improve, the cooperation at the region level cannot be attained. Even though, the bilateral relations have warmed slightly over a few months, but the decades long rivalry still persists to be a hurdle for SAARC.
Ali Raza Karachi
One can safely generalise that there is an upsurge in the 'average spend' when it comes to fashion. Among other reasons, deep down it is perhaps the self adopted need to be seen, recognised (envied?) or appreciated, that drives the fashion hungry. This pretty much covers the motivations of the rising "Faisalabadi/Sialkot New Money" class to the creme de la crème; not to forget the squeezed middle class and the teeny boppers. Yes, social acceptance has skipped a few rungs to climb up the ladder of priorities for us. Does that mean we are complexed? At least a certain chunk of the population is (although we will never like to admit).
It can be safely said that Europe has no other option but to look towards China to dig their economy out of the mess that it finds itself in. China might have its own interests in bailing out Europe, but the fact of the matters is that as things stand – with U.S having many problems of its own and Germany also backing out – China and China alone can help Europe. Yes, China would want political favours in return but everything comes at a price. And I don’t believe that Europe has another choice. Beggars can never be choosers, this is just the way the word works.
The article raises a number of important issues. However, the economically strained and crises ridden people, like myself, have redefined luxury/ fashion as per the depth of their wallets. In a way the fashion industry is increasing the gap between the rich and the poor, the effects may not be immediate, but the class difference will come on surface in the long run. The size of this pond is getting bigger and so are the number and size of fish in it, there is a lot of business potential here that can be further exploited- Ironic how we are an intolerant bunch of mullahs at one extreme and fashionistas at the other.
Dodar Khan Islamabad
I believe the South Korean ambassador’s recent proclamations are a positive note. South Korea has been one region that we have criminally neglected and hence such positive exclamations from their diplomat bode well for the bilateral ties. While the MFN debate continues to hog the headlines, we need to ensure that we continue to explore other areas and look to enhance our trade with other countries as well. South Korean ambassador’s proposals were also meticulously thought out. Hence, it seems as if he wasn’t merely giving the speech for the sake of it he actually wanted things to ameliorate. Let’s hope we respond positively.
Kashif Imran karachi
There is a negative growth in the Foreign Direct Investment which is adversely affecting Pakistan. The decline in FDI is not the only factor that is affecting the country’s economic growth. Surprisingly, the repatriation of profits and dividends overseas by foreign investors has also doubled in the first quarter of this fiscal year 2011-2012, as compared to the same period last year. Repatriations are now 75 per cent of FDI inflows, which is a big jump up from 32 per cent last year. Government urgently needs to work with existing investors to overcome business bottlenecks in the current difficult environment. Khalil Hamdani lahore
Pakistan decision to grant India the Most favoured Nation (MFN) is not something that the country’s trade bodies and business associations should fear about. The domestic market has just created a lot of hype of the issue. This is not the first time that Pakistan has relaxed its trade policies with other countries. It has happened a lot of times and granting India the MFN status only implies that Pakistan will give the same treatment to the imports of India as it does to imports from United States, Brazil, Thailand etc. However, the government is still taking measures to safeguard and protect the local industry. Erum Ali lahore
I cannot believe that despite being so rich in oil reserves, we have to borrow nearly everything from foreign countries. Nashpa well two’s discovery is not only a breakthrough for our power sector, more importantly it is a reminder for us as a nation that we do not have to rely on other countries to be self-sufficient. The fact that a gas discovery preceded the oil discovery means that we are strengthening on two fronts. I hope OGDCL continues to explore further opportunities and maybe one day we might be in a position where we would be exporting oil to other countries instead of importing it. Aasma Mushtaq islamabad
All of the mentioned entities in the article and all the remaining entities including, Pakistan Steel, Pakistan Railways, PIA etc must be privatised as early as possible. But this should be done in a transparent manner in order to make these ventures profitable not only for the stake holders, but also for the benefit of government, so that it can get rid of the liability of billions of rupees every year. It is not the job of government to run industries /commercial enterprises, nor are they capable of doing so. They only need to confine themselves to being regulators and facilitators. Mansab Ijaz lahore
The article no doubt proposes an enlightening suggestion; now the world needs Islamic economic system and not just banking system. But by resorting to the proposal that has been given by the writer in the article, would render PTI away from its popular impression. PTI's sole objective is 'indiscriminate justice and a holy war against corruption' rather than to hold the emblem of Islam. I am sorry, but aren’t we expecting a little too much from PTI? Another question that I would to raise here is that why is Islamic banking still resorting to KIBOR system, which is the corner stone of conventional banking?
Ahmed Shakil Lahore