KARACHI: The President of the Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI), Mian Nasser Hyatt Maggo, has demanded of the government to announce a uniform policy on Covid-19 as different policies for different cities are discriminatory.
He also objected to the new SOPs being enforced in Sindh from Monday and demanded that its nominees must be taken into Sindh's COVID task force as they are the main stakeholders in the province.
FPCCI president added that being the apex representative body of business, industry and trade community of Pakistan, FPCCI is receiving innumerable complaints regarding ease of doing business being turned upside down in the name of Covid-19 SOPs.
Maggo demanded of the Sindh government to consult with the FPCCI immediately, and the government should invite its nominees to the meetings of task force on Covid-19 before announcing any SOPs.
He said that the lockdown would have an adverse impact on business and trade, and it would create unemployment in the country.
Maggo said that the restaurant sector is one of the most affected sectors as this sector has lost most of its employment generation capacity.
He said that the government should support the sector in a way the government supports the construction sector as restaurants generate most employment opportunities after the construction sector.
Ather Sultan Chawla, VP of FPCCI and convener of the All Pakistan Restaurants Association (APRA), said that NCOC knows that restaurants industry has done its best to vaccinate its workforce, and most of the restaurants in Karachi have vaccinated more than 90% of their workforce.
He said that this is scientifically incorrect to imply that dinning out has contributed to the spread of Covid cases in Pakistan.
Shaukat Omerson, patron of APRA, said that many restaurants in Sindh will have to close down their operations permanently if the government of Sindh does not listen to their legitimate concerns.
Babar Nehal, chairman APRA, said that restaurants are more than willing to cooperate with the government, but the government must let the restaurants operate dine-out and dine-in under strict observance of SOPs.
Aleem Qureshi, chairman of Private Schools Alliance, opposed closure of schools in Sindh yet again and said that in the rest of the world schools have been opened on priority basis.
Rizwan Irfan, representative of the Tajir Action Committee, said that the business community has already requested the Sindh government to resolve the issues arising out of new restrictions in 72 hours and help the community to survive.
Khawaja Jamal Sethi of Karachi Tajir Alliance demanded that instead of 6am to 6pm the government should allow markets to open from 8am to 8pm and keep one day as closed day instead of two days as closed days.
Copyright Business Recorder, 2021