President of Korangi Association of Trade and Industry (KATI) Faraz ur-Rehman has demanded from the government that if the State Bank is not opening LCs, then traders should be allowed to buy dollars from the open market so they can pay for the containers stuck at the port.
Faraz-Ur-Rehman said that at this time the traders have been fined thousands and millions of dollars in terms of demurrage charges. Due to these demurrage charges, traders are suffering huge losses which they cannot afford.
President KATI suggested that the government move all containers to customs warehouses to avoid demurrage charges in dollars. Faraz-ur- Rehman said, we believe that there is a severe shortage of foreign exchange in the country, according to media reports, the State Bank has reserves of $6.7 billion as of December 2, which is only the amount to pay one month's import bill. On the other hand, China and the aid money given by Saudi Arabia are also included in it, which the government cannot spend. Faraz-ur- Rehman said that if the government takes the business community into confidence and consults, the business community will cooperate and support the government with various initiatives.
President KATI said that the government should allow the traders to bring cash dollars from abroad so that the traders can avoid huge losses by removing the goods stuck at the port. Faraz further said that the government should prioritize the economy over politics in this difficult time, and consult with all stakeholders to get the country out of the economic crisis and formulate a comprehensive long-term economic policy that should not be changed for at least 10 years.