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Businessmen slam budget.

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The overwhelming majority of business community in Lahore and Karachi has flayed the Federal Budget 2015-16. Karachi Chamber of Commerce and Industry termed the Finance Minister's budget speech as the only manipulation of numbers and said that this budget is neither people friendly nor businessman friendly. Lahore-based businessmen termed the budget as import-oriented, with some complaining that the government has taken no solid measure for industrialization. The budget is a political statement of a political government without much visionary reflection of where Pakistan should be heading. Lahore-based importers lauded the government measures to facilitate import-oriented businesses whereas the exporters are unhappy as no incentives were announced for them in the Budget for the financial year 2015-16.

FPCCI Chairman Mian Muhammad Adrees declared the Federal Budget as a difficult one, saying that the incentives given to the export sector are a welcome step and might help in accelerating exports from Pakistan. He said that like the previous governments, this one too has refrained from bringing big fishes into the tax net or even taking measures to prevent major tax evasions.

KCCI representatives said that likewise the previous budgets, this budget has also disappointed them and were an attempt to impose extra taxes on people. They said that in order to get extra revenue of Rs 500 billion, the government has once again impounded the people and business community into extra taxes.

Former President of KCCI Siraj Qasim Teli said that the budget had given tax exemptions to the new industries; however it had neglected the old industries. KCCI President Iftikhar Vohra said that those who are giving taxes had been overburdened in this budget.

In Lahore, PRGMEA Central Chairman Ijaz Khokhar and Vice Chairman Malik Naseer said that Finance Minister himself admitted that exports are constantly falling but instead of taking some positive steps to control decline he announced 50% rise in sales tax on yarn and processing sector from 2% to 3%. It will directly impact on value-added sector, as liquidity of SMEs in apparel sector will further be piled up by 50% more, causing further decline in exports.

He said that government has already failed to improve growth rate of textile sector under the European Union's GSP Plus status because of lack of planning.

LCCI former Vice President Kashif Anwar said that measures have been taken to increase exports but it will not be feasible till the input costs like electricity and gas will be decreased.

LCCI president Ijaz Mumtaz termed Federal Budget 2015-16 good and balanced in existing circumstances. He said that Federal Finance Minister Ishaq Dar deserves appreciation for accepting a number of LCCI demands.

President Lasbela Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Yakoob H Karim, while appreciating the decision to reduce export refinance rate to 4%, said that it's a good sign for exporters following reduction of 1.5% on export financing. But he regretted that no other relief has been given to the industrial sector that is suffering badly due to poor infrastructure and massive cost of doing business.

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Publication:Pakistan Textile Journal
Geographic Code:9PAKI
Date:Jul 31, 2015
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