Islamabad Chamber of Small Traders

Promoting businesses only option for self-reliance: ICST

ISLAMABAD – Islamabad Chamber of Small Traders (ICST) on Saturday said the decision of the government to simplify the procedure of doing business in Pakistan is a laudable move and an important step in the right direction.

Easing doing business is the country is a great step towards ending dependence on loans and ensuring self-reliance, it said.

Currently, Pakistan stands at 136th  position among 190 economies ranked by the World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business index while the government wants the country to be included in top fifty economies, said Patron ICST Shahid Rasheed Butt.

He said that the ambitious target is not impossible as the country is moving in the right direction but the speed of reforms is slow which must be expedited with the consultation of all the stakeholders. 

Shahid Rasheed Butt said that ease of business would require the bureaucracy to change its mindset, reduce red tape-ism, discouraging corruption, simplification of tax and other laws, and easing visa regimes.

Such steps would infuse more confidence in the business community, stop the exodus of industry and flight of capital and attract investments in industrial and agricultural sectors.

He said that the government has already reduced the number of taxes from 47 to 16 for the companies as simpler laws, regulations and procedures are crucial for encouraging private investment.

However, it should also discourage interaction between tax officials and the business community by promoting automation.

Ease of doing business include improved infrastructure, availability of cheap energy, competition, affordable loans etc. which should be considered to escalate economic growth, he demanded. 

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