(January 14, 2022)
Chairman of National Business Group Pakistan, President Pakistan Businessmen and Intellectuals Forum, and All Karachi Industrial Alliance, and former provincial minister Mian Zahid Hussain on Friday said 2022 will be more painful for the people than 2021.
Pakistan will continue to be among the most expensive countries in the world in 2022 while political and economic instability, inflation, and exchange rate erosion will set new records, he said.
Mian Zahid Hussain said that the price of petrol, gas, and electricity will continue to rise while political and economic stability will continue to damage the economy in 2020 making life difficult for the people.
Talking to the business community, the veteran business leader said that 2022 was welcomed by raising the price of petrol to a record level in the country’s history.
Inflation has broken the back of the masses but at the same time Pakistan is being called one of the cheapest countries in the world but the issue of falling per capita income is conveniently ignored which is a joke, he added.
He said that circular debt is rapidly increasing and touching the level of two and a half trillion rupees. The government is borrowing heavily and getting new loans to repay the old ones, which has increased the influence of the IMF and other institutions in the country to a dangerous level.
Mian Zahid Hussain further said that according to the claims of the government, the growth rate will be 4.5 percent, the World Bank estimates that Pakistan’s growth rate will be 3.4 percent but some experts see it falling at 2 percent.
It will be impossible to absorb three million youth moving to the labor market every year unless a growth rate of seven percent is ensured.
He noted that the government is reducing social, and development expenditure to reduce debt while it is also increasing the burden on taxpayers, but imports and the government’s administrative expenditure are increasing rapidly which is a recipe for disaster.
During the last three years, four finance ministers and six finance secretaries have been replaced, while the situation of the FBR and other important departments is no different, with the average person suffering the consequences, he said.
Mian Zahid Hussain further said that the government is also in trouble on the political front, it has faced defeat in the local body elections and the bomb of foreign funding case could explode any time. The opposition is also preparing for a movement, which will also have a negative impact on the economy.