KARACHI: Chairman Association of Builders and Developers of Pakistan (ABAD) Arif Yousuf Jeewa, rejecting the Monitory Policy announced by the State Bank of Pakistan, has said if the government will raise further Regulatory Duty (RD) on imported items as hinted by the SBP, a new cyclone of dearness will engulf the country and cost of construction will rise enormously making housing a rare commodity for the general public.
Chairman ABAD said that the Caretaker Government has already increased rates of US Dollar, petroleum products and electricity and now setting stage for increasing Regulatory Duty, which will have far reaching negative impact on already ailing economy of Pakistan. He recalled that the ABAD has time and again requested previous governments to do away with Regulatory Duties because local manufacturers are taking undue advantage of RD by increasing rates of various construction materials. He said that local manufacturers have increased price of steel bars from Rs. 68 per ton to Rs. 1, 04,000 after imposition of Regulatory Duty on import of steel and they will again increase the price of the commodity if the caretaker government will raise the RD. Not only that but prices of sanitary items, tiles and other construction materials have also been increased after imposition of RD, he added.
Arif Jeewa said that it is sad that now the State Bank of Pakistan has hinted to increase RD, which will further aggravate condition of construction sector and ultimately general public will suffer the impact of any raise in RD.
He said that the SBP has raised policy rate by 1 percent which have negative impact on the economy as everything will become dearer. He said that Pakistan is facing shortfall of 12 million housing units and if the government will increase RD, the construction activities will come to a halt as construction cost has already been increased by 15 percent. He said that imposition of new RD will boost cartelization among manufacturers of construction material, people will suffer further dearness and budget deficit will also increase.
Arif Jeewa advised the caretaker government not take any major decision regarding the economy as just 9 days are left to the general election and leave major decisions for the incoming government.