At these meetings, the Prime Minister was assisted by the Governor of Sindh, Imran Ismail, the Federal Minister of Economic Affairs, Hammad Azhar, the Federal Finance Advisor, Abdul Hafeez Sheikh, the President of FBR, Shabbar Zaidi, the Governor of the Bank State, Reza Baqir, the Federal Minister of Maritime Affairs, Ali Zaidi, Mr. Resources Minister Faisal Vawda, Chairman of the Investment Board Syed Zubair Hyder Gilani, and others.
When speaking with The News, business leaders said that the prime minister was receptive to the problems and concerns of the community, but no decision was made, as several meetings were organized to leave the prime minister with a very limited time to resolve the complaints of the sectors.
However, the prime minister and his team refused categorically to eliminate the condition of providing a copy of the CNIC in transactions of more than 40,000 rupees. It was the main demand of the business community.
The senior vice president of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Pakistan (FPCCI), Mirza Ikhtiar Baig, said the prime minister had assured that a mechanism would soon be implemented according to the Bangladesh model to ensure rapid reimbursements to exporters. “In addition, the prime minister accepted my proposal that taxpayers once audited would not be audited again for the next three years, and instructions were given to the president of the Federal Revenue Board (FBR), Syed Shabbar Zaidi.”
Ikhtiar Baig criticized the central bank’s policy of raising interest rates by saying that this would not contain inflation, but would increase the cost of doing business, as is clear from past experience.
The meeting also included the participation of Finance Counselor Abdul Hafeez Shaikh, Trade and Commerce Counselor Abdul Razak Dawood, Federal Ministers, FBR Chairman Syed Shabbar Zaidi and Governor of the State Bank of Pakistan, Reza Baqir.
The prime minister informed the representatives of the business community that the subsidies and concessions should go since the government was focused on the mobilization of income and the stabilization of the external account.