Chambers of Commerce demand relief measures for business community in upcoming budget
Islamabad : The Islamabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry (ICCI) and the Chakwal Chamber of Commerce & Industry (CCCI) said that the businesses have suffered huge losses due to the lockdown and restrictions imposed by the government to curb the spread of third wave of Covid-19 pandemic, therefore, the government should announce some relief measures for the business community in the upcoming budget that would help in reviving the business activities and improving the economy. This demand was made during a joint meeting of ICCI and CCCI when a delegation of CCCI visited ICCI led by President Haji Noor Sultan. Group Leader Qazi Akbar, Khurram Kamran, Shehzad Saadat, Moeen Akram, Shoukat Rafiq, Ejaz Mihnas, Amir Najeeb Bhutta and Haji Abdul Razzaq were in the delegation. Zafar Bakhtawari former President ICCI and newly elected Secretary General of UBG and Khalid Chaudhry former Senior Vice President ICCI were also present at the occasion.
Addressing the delegation, Fatma Azim, Acting President, Islamabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry said that the government has announced to open the restaurants and tourist resorts from May 24, 2021, which was a laudable decision. However, she said that as more and more people were now getting vaccination and coronavirus cases were also showing a reducing trend, therefore, the government should gradually remove restrictions on other businesses and extend business timings up to 10 pm. She assured that ICCI would fully cooperate with Chakwal CCI in resolving the key issues of business community.
Haji Noor Sultan, President, Chakwal Chamber of Commerce & Industry said that the restrictions of coronavirus have badly hit businesses in Chakwal due to which many businesses are suffering a great deal, therefore, it was high time that the government should announce some concessions for business sector in the next budget like reducing high tax and interest rates, allowing businesses to pay taxes, loans, rents and utility bills in easy instalments and providing low cost credit facility to SMEs etc.
Both sides stressed that the government should cooperate with private sector for the establishment of a new industrial estate in the region as it was direly needed in order to promote industrialization and create jobs for youth. They also exchanged views on areas of collaboration to make joint efforts for promoting the cause of business community and resolving their key issues.
Zafar Bakhtawari, former President ICCI & newly elected Secretary General of UBG, Khalid Chaudhry former Senior Vice President ICCI and others also spoke at the occasion as stressed upon the government to take measures for resolving the key issues of business community on priority basis.