(February 28, 2020)
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 construction industry once considered recession-proof is nose-diving due to host of reasons.
This sector attracting five billion dollars investment should be revived through intervention as it is supporting GDP, 42 allied industries and providing jobs to millions, he said.
Mian Zahid Hussain said that the evergreen industry is struggling because of taxes, increasing prices of raw material and FATF.
Talking to the business community, the veteran business leader said that growing poverty has also damaged this sector while the government’s promise to construct five million houses is yet to see the light of the day due to financial difficulties.
The Former Minister noted that the private sector should come forward to resolve the issue of scarcity of houses in the country which will also propel economic activities.
He said that the construction and property sector is also facing an issue of proper regulation which encourages black sheep to cheat masses of their lifetime savings.
The Veteran Business Leader said that weakness in the laws governing the construction sector has also encouraged many to hide their illicit money in this sector which has damaged its reputation.
He noted that this sector should have been used to boost GDP but increased DC rates, withholding tax, capital gain tax etc. have been imposed which proved counterproductive.
Mian Zahid Hussain said that a tax should be slapped on vacant plots to encourage construction while builders should be given tax breaks to promote the construction of plazas in cities to resolve the issue of housing.
The system of house building should also be revisited as high interest rates and other problems are keeping many away from such schemes.
This sector must be regulated properly to safeguard interests of masses, resolve the pressing problem of housing boost employment and get tax from this sector according to its potential, he said.