Concern expressed continued fall in the manufacturing sector. Economic stability unthinkable amid political uncertainty.

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(September 27, 2019)

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 on Friday said Large-scale manufacturing (LSM) is shrinking continuously.

The important sector of LSM is going down since the last eight months in a row which has increased worries about the industrial sector, revenue and employment, he said.

Mian Zahid Hussain said that the LSM distress is also discouraging local and foreign investors which is not good for the economy.

Talking to the business community, the veteran business leader said that last year the growth target of LSM was 8.1 percent but it fell by 3.6 percent. This year the LSM target has been revised to 3.1 percent which will be impossible to meet.

The former minister noted that the policies governing this important sector having a 10.7 percent share in the GDP and 80 percent share in overall manufacturing has made progress very difficult.

The sectors facing crunch include construction, iron, and steel, cement, pharmaceutical, automotive and petroleum sectors, he said, adding that the majority of investors are trying for survival, therefore, there is no question of new investments.

The veteran business leader said that many industrialists would support current interest rate, devaluation, and steps to reduce the deficit but they have reservations over the process of accountability, delayed and skewed decisions, lack of interest on the part of policymakers, developments over CPEC and absence of consensus on important economic matters.

Mian Zahid Hussain said that PPP ensured consensus on 18th Amendment and NFC Award while PML ensured the same on CPEC but the current government considers it wastage of time which is resulting in problems. He said that efforts to bring economic stability amid political uncertainty is nothing more than wastage of time.

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