LAHORE: Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) President Almas Hyder said here Monday that starting a business should be made easy to improve Pakistan's ranking in ease-of-doing-business index.

“We would have to come at par with the developed nations to strengthen our economy," he said and added that government would have to separate registering a company from regulating the company.

Almas said that starting business in Pakistan was a hefty task and one of the major reasons behind economic woes of Pakistan.

Ease of doing business in Pakistan was below average with the international ranking of 136th.

Singapore topped in this ranking from 2007 to 2016, while New Zealand was topper since 2017.

Exports of Singapore jumped to $ 396.8 billion in 2017 from $ 338 billion in 2016. Likewise, exports of New Zealand, which had population of around 4.5 million people, jumped to $ 37.35 billion in 2017 from 33.61 billion in 2016.

LCCI President mentioned that Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP), banks, Tax Facilitation Centres of Regional Tax Offices, Federal Board of Revenue, Excise & Taxation Department of the district, Punjab Employees Social Security Institution and Labour Department of Punjab involved in starting a business as compared to New Zealand where only Companies Office was doing all of this.

He said that international indexes were very important for any economy as these encouraged or discouraged the international community for establishing trade and investment relations therefore Pakistan would have to improve its economic rankings.

Giving an analysis of Pakistan's international rankings, Almas Hyder said that Pakistan was at 142 position in starting business index, 141 in dealing with construction permits, 167 in getting electricity, 170 in registering property, 105 in getting credit, 172 in paying taxes, 171 in trading across borders, 156 in enforcing contracts and at 82 in resolving insolvency.

Almas Hyder suggested that a company office in Pakistan should be formed for incorporation of new companies. Registering a company should be separated from regulating the company. Regulations should start once the company gets operational.

He said that companies should be given facility to get all the registrations (Federal and Provincial), insurance of all types of trade, industrial and business permits and license online through the Company Office.

LCCI President hoped that country would witness a positive economic change once these suggestions were adopted and implemented by the government.

Lahore Chamber, he said, had decided to highlight all impediments to ease of doing business through media. This would, definitely, go a long way in bringing improvement in overall business atmosphere in Pakistan.

Copyright APP (Associated Press of Pakistan), 2018