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LAHORE: The Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI) and the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) have congratulated Hamza Shehbaz on assuming the office of Punjab chief minister and urged him to help solve the problems faced by the business community.

In a statement, FPCCI President Irfan Iqbal Sheikh and LCCI President Mian Nauman Kabir, LCCI’s Senior Vice President Mian Rehman Aziz Chan, Vice President Haris Ateeq and regional chairman of the FPCCI Muhammad Nadeem Qureshi expressed the hope that the chief minister would focus on resolving the economic issues with a new vigour.

The FPCCI and LCCI office-bearers said that Punjab is the province that has the biggest economy in Pakistan, and which contributes the most to national GDP. They said that Chief Minister Hamza Shehbaz would have to live up to the expectations of the people in achieving the economic objectives.

They said the new chief minister has every capacity to discharge his responsibilities adequately. The LCCI would supplement all the efforts of Punjab government aimed at economic wellbeing of the province.

They said the Punjab chief minister would have to evolve a strategy to remove all the impediments to economic growth.

The office-bearers of FPCCI and LCCI drew the attention of the prime minister’s scion to some issues that they think should be resolved as soon as possible.

They said the water tariff of WASA Lahore for industrial and commercial users (Rs 100,000 for 1 Cusec and Rs 50,000 for ½ Cusec) is extremely high as compared to other cities of Punjab. The LCCI believes the tariff should be uniform across all the cities.

They were of the opinion that LCCI should have adequate representation in the District Administration Committees for timely resolution of problems. There is a dire need for new parking plazas in Lahore due to the worsening situation vis-à-vis parking space.

The LCCI office-bearers said that encroachments have adversely affected the commercial areas of Lahore. These areas should be freed of encroachments because unauthorised and illegal structures add to the cost of doing business.

Water hydrants should be set up in and around the major markets of Lahore to effectively cope with fire incidents. The high rate of conversion fee (20% of commercial value) for land use charged by the Lahore Development Authority is an impediment to industrialisation and should be abolished, they said.

The LCCI office-bearers said that surveillance under the Safe City project should be extended to all the markets of Lahore along with measures to control street crimes. They said the Punjab government should also play its role in resolving the issue of installation of Water Treatment Plants for industrial units.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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