Sustainable political stability is a prerequisite for a sound economy, which will promise greater prosperity for people from different strata of society, said Saarc Chamber of Commerce and Industry President Iftikhar Ali Malik on Tuesday.

While meeting a delegation of Karachi traders, led by United Business Group President Zubair Tufail, Malik said that Pakistan at this critical juncture, in the wake of Covid-19, could neither endure political turmoil nor afford political instability.

“We need uninterrupted, stable democracy, which is a prerequisite for sustained economic growth to cope with multiple challenges,” he said.

Malik added that time had changed as now the influential nations were paying more attention to financial warfare to continue their dominance.

“These countries are successfully using their weapons of economic destruction to weaken economies of poor nations to achieve their unholy designs while Pakistan’s economy is not strong enough to withstand economic terrorism,” he pointed out.

The Saarc Chamber president emphasised that it was indeed important to increase exports and for that purpose, “we need to reduce our cost of doing business so that our products become competitive in the international market.”

Read More: Economy doing well but political stability missing

He stated that trade facilitation was the key to promoting industries. “We need to remove all obstacles and create a culture of trade facilitation,” he added. Malik stressed the need for consistency in government policies and a clear roadmap to move forward.

He was of the view that all sectors including the industrial sector should meet their national obligations and play their role in strengthening the economy while the government should introduce reforms and control the smuggling of raw material and finished goods.

He urged the government to conduct market research to look for new export destinations for Pakistani products, which were among the best around the world as far as quality and price were concerned.

The Saarc Chamber chief said that Pakistani missions abroad should be bound to introduce Pakistani products and disseminate trade-related information so that entrepreneurs could capitalise on the opportunities there.

Published in The Express Tribune, July 21st, 2021.

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