FPCCI, SBP joint committee to resolve LCs issue

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Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry President Irfan Iqbal Sheikh has said that the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) had announced a joint committee along with the FPCCI for clearing backlog of letters of credit (LCs).

The committee would comprise of four to five nominees of the FPCCI president, and almost same number of the SBP officials would be nominated by the bank governor, according to a media statement, issued by the FPCCI regional office here on Wednesday..

Irfan Iqbal Sheikh said that the committee would be co-chaired by Suleman Chawla, SVP (Senior Vice President) FPCCI. He advised the business, industry and trade community to bring their cases to the said committee.

He explained that delays were causing detention charges, demurrage, shortages of raw materials for industrial production, closure of major industrial units, disruptions in the supplies of agricultural inputs, closure of plants due to unavailability of spare parts of the machinery and equipment, unfulfillment of export orders, loss of revenue due to dwindling production and layoffs.

Irfan Sheikh stressed that pending cases falling under three different categories could be resolved immediately: (i) all import consignments not involving dollar outflow should be cleared with immediate effect (ii) SBP should come up with a plan on what the importers could order from international suppliers to enable the business community to keep the trust of suppliers (iii) Open Account should be completely restored, as currently, it was only good for industries for their raw materials.

SBP Governor Jameel Ahmad said that they would discuss individual or sectorial cases in the joint committee with the FPCCI.—APP