Political opponents fear defeat due to economic performance

Dar lauds services of Iftikhar Malik for businessmen, inaugurates Capital House; Business leaders assure support to govt for economic uplift

Islamabad—Federal Finance Minister Ishaq Dar on Saturday said that due to government’s prudent policies, the economy has made a turnaround from the verge of collapse to stability, however opponents were unable to digest this progress. Addressing the inaugural ceremony of new building of Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry, Capital House, here he said, “The opponents are aware that if the current government completes its tenure, it would be hard for them to win next election as the PML-N government has not only taken the country out of crisis but has also developed economy on sustainable grounds.” He said that the government aims at lifting the GDP growth rate from current 4.7 percent upto 7 percent in near future, adding that the economic indicators have shown considerable progress during the past three years of the government. He said that world institutions including World Bank and International Monetary fund have predicted 5% growth rate during the current fiscal year. He said the foreign exchange reserves have increased from less than $7 billion three years ago to over $24 billion now while the forex reserves of State Bank of Pakistan have also increased from Just $3 billion to $19 billion. The minister said that there has been 60 percent increase in the tax collection during the past three years which is a healthy sign for economy. He said that businessmen were equal partners in this journey of progress and prosperity and lauded the services of prominent businessman, Iftikhar Malik for promoting the interests of business community. Dar said that there was need that we focus on national interests instead of defending personal ones.
He stressed the need for separating politics from economy saying that he has been advocating for developing sustainable economic policy in consensus with all the political parties to take the country forward.
Rauf Alam, President Pakistan Federal Chamber of Commerce and Industry, in his welcoming address, lauded efforts carried out by the Finance Minister for putting the national economy on right track and assured him all out cooperation of the business community.
He thanked the Prime Minister, Finance Minister and Commerce Minister for extending generous support to the construction of Capital House. He also thanked Planning MinisterAhsan qbal.
He said that business community’s representatives and organizations were quite active in highlighting and promoting the national prestige and image in the world. “We are trying to establish headquarters of ECO in Islamabad and are lobbying through the higher office-bearers of the organization.” Upcoming ECO business meeting will be held in Capital House on November 20.
He further said that business community would extend full support to the government for the completion of China-Pakistan Economic Corridor because the project would open the door to national economic uplift.
Head of Guard Group of Industries Iftikhar Ali Malik said that Finance Minister Ishaq Dar was a dashing, desirable, dynamic, vibrant and active minister. This is why, IMF and World Bank declared him as Finance Minister of the South Asia 2016.
He proposed to the government to provide the Baloch youth with training opportunities to enable them to get benefit of CPEC project. Otherwise, Baloch youth will not be able to benefit out of this project. If trained labour will be hired for the CPEC related projects, it may tantamount to creation of sense of flippancy in the Baloch people.
Acting President of FPCCI Khalid Tawab said the government should offer incentives to registered entities to deal with tax compliant units only. He hoped the Capital House would lead to improving business activities.

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