ISLAMABAD: The business community and traders on Monday hailed the government’s smart lockdown strategy adopted during Covid-19, saying that it benefited the local businesses, especially export and construction sectors.
Islamabad Chamber Commerce and Industry (ICCI) President Muhammad Ahmed Waheed, addressing a press conference, said, “The government provided good incentives to the local industrial sector, especially export-oriented businesses besides offering huge relief package to the constitution sector.”
He said that the government came up with a comprehensive strategy that helped mitigate the losses the businesses community might have faced due to the coronavirus spread. The ICCI president particularly mentioned the timely payment of sales and income tax refunds which bolstered the businesses.
Additionally, he said, the decision to reduce interest rate by the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) was made in a timely manner, during the most challenging times, and urged the commercial banks to offers credit to businesses, especially the small and medium enterprises (SMEs).
He termed the report by Moody’s as an encouraging sign as it would promote the country’s image and help the government attract Foreign Direct Investments (FDIs).
The ICCI president stressed on the need for proper utilization of the economic package provided by the government and also highlighted the need for modernising the industrial sector to increase exports.
Rawalpindi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (RCCI) President Saboor Malik said that as compared to other regional economies, Pakistan’s government has adopted a balanced approach to deal with Covid 19 challenges. “We adopted a good approach and protected the local business from the negative impact of Covid- 19 challenge,” he remarked.
He said that during the Covid 19 the government announced packages for local businesses, released refunds besides providing relief in utility bills, which he said gave a huge relief to the local industry.
He added that the government’s economic package, especially for the construction and export sector would help generate economic activities and boost the local industrial sector.
The RCCI president said that PM Imran emerged as a visionary leader as the smart lockdown strategy was appreciated across the world and various economies followed this course of action.
He expressed hope that the positive ranking by Moody’s would have a positive impact on Pakistan’s economy. He said that there was a huge need for coordination between all stakeholders to come on one page for resolving the issues of the business community.
Meanwhile, Pakistan Federation Chamber of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI) Senior Vice President Qaisar Khan Daudzai also appreciated the government’s strategy of a smart lockdown for Covid 19 and said that the business community admired the package provided by the government especially for exports and construction industry.
He admired the overall leadership of Prime Minister Imran Khan during Covid 19 situation and said that as compared to the other countries, the government had adopted a very good strategy for lowering the impact of the pandemic on the local business.
Tanzeem-e-Tajiran Pakistan Central President Kashif Chaudhry also lauded the government’s strategy during the pandemic.
He proposed the government to provide more incentives for six million small traders and retailers of the country by providing them with business credit on lower interest rates to promote businesses.