Business community demands complete ban on import of luxuries items to protect foreign exchange

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LAHORE : SAARC Chamber of Commerce and Industry Senior
Vice President and United Business Group (UBG) central chairman Iftikhar
Ali Malik Monday asked Prime Minister designate Imran Khan to slap a
complete ban on import of luxury items to protect foreign exchange reserves which will also promote local industry and generate employment and be Pakistani buy Pakistani.
Addressing a meeting of traders in connection with Independence Day here
in City, he said independence was attained after offering colossal
sacrifices offered by our elders and there is no substitute in the world
for freedom so we all should play our vital role making Pakistan an
economic giant and citadel of Islam to make it corruption free welfare
Islamic state in the comity of nation.
He said that authorities can consider a ban on imports like many other
countries including Iran, Nigeria, and Egypt have experienced the same.
“Pakistan is importing eighty thousand luxury cars and thousands of costly
motorcycles and countless other items even fruits and vegetables worth
billions of dollars annually which must be banned,” he added.
He said that Pakistan needs seven to eight percent transformational growth
in next ten years to mobilize the resources for social uplift of backward
areas of the country and create jobs for growing youth population. The
import bill reached record $60.86bn in 2017-18 from $52.9bn in the previous year, reflecting an increase of 15 per cent. Yet the country’s trade deficit reached a historic $37.6bn in 2017-18 from $32.5bn in the previous year.
He said stable economy is prerequisite for the survival of the country and
promotion of democracy. He is much optimistic that the coming PTI
government would take private sector into confidence for implementation of
business friendly policies. He said if the PTI government properly utilizes the talents of the youth, he would be optimistic that Pakistan can be among top 10 economies by the end of 2040.