President of the Pakistan Businessmen and Intellectuals Forum Mian Zahid Hussain, Chairman of the National Business Community and President of the Pakistan Businessmen and Intellectuals Forum, said a reduction in import duties on 152 goods, coupled with other positive measures, is driving economic activity.
More incentives are required to stimulate growth, otherwise the budget deficit would surpass the goal of 7% to 8%, he said.
Mian Zahid Hussain said that economic performance is better than last year, but there is a need for a reduction in taxes and incentives, while the ritual of continued energy price increases should be abandoned. He said the continued and stable supply of gas and electricity should be ensured if all gains can be reversed otherwise.
Compared to the World Banks forecast of 0.5%, Moody’s Investor Service has estimated a rise of 1.5 percent. The central bank believes that growth will be between 1.5 and 2.5 percent, while the government is optimistic that growth will be 2.1 percent.
He noted that it would be inadequate to provide relief to the masses and economy or render virus losses even if the government meets the growth goal.
He said banks are also cautious in extending loans to the private sector as there is a looming danger of defaults and the deadline for repayment is getting closer.
The government should revisit all the important policies and undertake reforms in critical sectors so that economy could be stabilized on a sustainable basis, he demanded.