The Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry’s Businessmen Panel (BMP) calling for growth-oriented monetary policy, stated that the current policy rate of 15 percent is the highest in view of the regional countries markup rates and Industry cannot survive at the existing 14-year high record discount rate.
FPCCI former President and BMP Chairman Mian Anjum Nisar demanded the immediate reduction in electricity tariff especially for SMEs as a first step towards cut in production cost while the second and vital step toward this direction would be bringing discount rate to the regional level with a view to provide level-playing field especially to the export industry.
The decision would have the same importance for the domestic industry too, as it has also been facing tough competition of cheaper imported merchandize in the country following FTAs with several countries, he added. While appreciating the central bank’s role in sustaining economic growth through supporting trade and industry, he said that reduction in interest rate would be vital relief to the business community.
The FPCCI former president said that achievements in exports and stabilization of the economy through the monetary policy measures now require to sustain again by extending reduction in the policy rates so that the debt liability of the business sector is compensated through lower mark-up rate. The trade and industry need continued support from the government in the form of lower interest rate amidst such external shocks, he suggested.
The BMP Chairman expressed serious concern over the the highest policy rate in the region and in this situation industry cannot survive and to compete in the international market is absolutely impossible.
Mian Anjum Nisar asked the SBP governor to fulfill his commitment of maintaining accommodative monetary stance in the near and long-term to support the rare recovery amid uncertain Covid-19 challenges.
He stressed the need for reduction in discount rate, arguing that low key policy rate is essential to make Pakistani exporting sector as well as the local industry competitive.