March 24, 2017
President Pakistan Businessmen and Intellectuals Forum (PBIF), President AKIA, Senior Vice Chairman of the Businessmen Panel of FPCCI and former Provincial Minister Mian Zahid Hussain said that the prices of necessitates are skyrocketing which has made life of poor miserable.
Federal and Provincial Governments should take steps to control price hike which has taken tool on the masses struggling for survival, he said.
Mian Zahid Hussain said that Government should consider establishing discount stores across the country to provide necessary food and non-food items to masses of reasonable prices.
He said that despite reduced oil and grain prices the imports of these items have surged by eighteen percent in the first eight months of this fiscal.
The share of petroleum and food in the annual import bill has reached to thirty two percent which is disturbing as it will widen the trade deficit, he added.
The Veteran Business Leader said that import of LNG has jumped by144 percent while import of liquefied petroleum gas has increased by 45 percent in the first eight months.
During the period palm oil worth 1.18 billion dollars, other food items worth 1.38 billion dollars, pulses worth 600 million dollars and tea worth 362 million dollars was imported, he added.
The import of machinery including generators, office equipment, textile, construction and electrical goods has increased by 42 percent to 7.81 billion dollars. The import of mobile phones and telecom equipment was reduced due to additional duty imposed by the Govt. recently.
Mian Zahid Hussain said that State Bank has recently announced some steps to reduce imports of unnecessary items but more should be done to control trade deficit.