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ICCI slams further hike of Rs.1.49 per unit in power tariff by NEPRA

ISLAMABAD :       The Islamabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry has slammed the decision of NEPRA to allow uniform increase of Rs.1.49 per unit in power tariff to all power distribution companies and termed it an unfavorable decision as it would further enhance the cost of doing business, increase inflation and affect the growth of business and industrial activities.
Rafat Farid, Acting President and Iftikhar Anwar Sethi Vice President, Islamabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry said that power tariffs in Pakistan were already quite high, which were the main cause of high production cost and in these circumstances, NEPRA has allowed further hike in power tariff to recover around Rs190 billion from all consumers in 15 months in line with a staff level agreement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF). They said that this move would have a negative impact on business sector as it would further enhance the production cost, increase inflation for people and make our exports further uncompetitive in the national market.
They said that the rupee has depreciated greatly against dollar touching Rs.158 against a dollar in interbank market just recently. They said that the industry was importing lot of inputs to meet manufacturing needs and big fall in value of rupee against dollar would make import of raw material for industry very costly. They stressed that government should take strong measures to bring stability in the local currency in order to save businesses from further losses.
Rafat Farid said that Pakistan’s heavy reliance on fossil fuels for energy generation was the main cause of high cost of doing business. They said it was high time that government should make transition from conventional and to renewable energy sources for generating cheap electricity.

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