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KARACHI: Chairman of National Business Group and President Pakistan Businessmen and Intellectuals Forum Mian Zahid Hussain has said a reduction in import duties on 152 items coupled with other positive steps are pushing economic activities.

More incentives are needed to spur growth otherwise the budget deficit will cross the target of seven percent to eight percent, he said.

Mian Zahid Hussain said that economic activities are better as compared to the last year but a reduction in taxes and incentives are needed while the ritual of continued hike in energy prices should be abandoned.

He said that continued and dependable supply of gas and electricity should be ensured otherwise all the gains can be reversed.

Moody’s Investor Service has projected a growth of 1.5 percent against the World Banks projection of 0.5 percent. Central bank thinks growth would be somewhere between 1.5 to 2.5 percent while the government is confident for achieving growth of 2.1 percent.

He noted that even if the government achieves growth target it would be insufficient to provide relief to the masses and economy or make for virus losses.

He said that banks are also cautious in extending loans to the private sector as a threat of defaults is looming and repayment deadline is reaching closer.

The government should revisit all the important policies and undertake reforms in critical sectors so that economy could be stabilised on a sustainable basis, he demanded.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021

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