Deep political, economic crisis dangerous; 100 million facing hunger. Fear of default has made the rupee weaker. Businesses facing problems in getting dollars from banks.

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(July 22, 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 due to increasing inflation, unemployment, political instability, energy crisis and general economic depression in Pakistan, at least now one hundred million people cannot eat enough food.

People have been forced to compromise on health and education and are taking their children out of school and into work, he said.

Mian Zahid Hussain said that the politics of hatred and nationalism are being promoted in the country, which is destroying the society and the economic conditions are getting worse.

Talking to the business community, the veteran business leader said that the rains have caused havoc across the country, while at present there is a famine-like situation in many areas, which is not being noticed.

Inflation has robbed people of their right to live, while weak competition laws are helping cartels to rob the public, but no attention has been paid to this, which has made the Competition Commission a burden on the exchequer.

Electricity prices continue to rise and economic conditions continue to worsen. Since November 1998, the rupee has not depreciated as much in a week as it has now and reached 228 rupees to the dollar, while businesses are facing serious difficulties in getting dollars from banks for port clearance of imported goods.

Importers are made to pay additional demurrage and detention charges of lakhs of rupees per day and despite all this, the central bank is without a full-time governor.

The government has not been able to show better performance in the social and educational sector as well as in the economic field, which is unfortunate.

Mian Zahid Hussain further said that the country whose total exports are around 30 billion dollars but it is importing chemicals worth 14 billion dollars as the country lacks policies for its production in the country.

Despite having the best canal system in the world, agricultural goods worth seventeen billion dollars are being imported, while machinery worth twelve billion dollars and vehicles worth four billion dollars are also being imported, which has squeezed the country’s economy.

The responsibility for improving the education sector lies with the Higher Education Commission which lacks a full-time head and is run by bureaucrats, which shows the seriousness of the authorities over this most important sector.

Dozens of public and private universities have almost gone bankrupt, but no one is interested in saving our dysfunctional education system which is like playing with the future of the country.

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