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Shahbaz Sharif should form a broad-based government

Shahbaz Sharif should form a broad-based government

KARACHI, /DNA/ – Chairman of National Business Group Pakistan, President Pakistan Businessmen and Intellectuals Forum, and All Karachi Industrial Alliance, and former provincial minister Mian Zahid Hussain, said on Friday that Mian Shahbaz Sharif should form a broad-based government after consultations.

After forming the government, the PM should direct immediate negotiation for a new loan from the IMF to save the country from bankruptcy, he said.

Mian Zahid Hussain said that various international and local institutions and experts are sounding the alarm about Pakistan, while some unsuccessful and frustrated political elements within the country are also engaged in efforts to damage the country, which is condemnable.

Speaking to the business community, the veteran business leader said that the burden of local and foreign debt on Pakistan is continuously increasing. The only short-term way to pay these debts is by taking new loans to repay old ones.

Borrowing has become necessary as domestic production, exports, remittances, and investment etc. cannot solve the problem of a shortage of funds.

Mian Zahid Hussain said that it is important for Pakistan to remain under the supervision of the IMF due to increasing debts, but the results of this will be more inflation, unemployment, a decline in public services, and cuts in development projects.

He said that the economic situation has made the lives of people difficult, while another IMF deal will add to the miseries of the masses.

The business leader said that in this critical situation, there has not been a notable reduction in government expenditure that was expected, nor has there been a significant increase in revenue.

There has been no progress towards direct taxes, efforts to reduce the budget deficit, or the negative effects of the current situation on the people.

He informed that presently Pakistan’s external debt has reached 124.6 billion dollars, and since 2011, domestic debt has increased six times to 146.4 billion dollars. Gross external and domestic debt and liabilities increased from $145.7 billion to $222 billion.

According to a report, Pakistan’s per capita debt has increased from 823 dollars to 1123 dollars, while per capita GDP has decreased by 6% due to the practice of borrowing and irresponsible spending.

Even in these circumstances, there is no urgency on the part of policymakers to increase agricultural and industrial production in the country, to make the youth skilled, or to stop the series of unnecessary projects.

The emphasis of the top authorities is on consumption, he said, adding that if the government wants to improve the social security, health, and education sectors and give some relief to the people, it has to make effective reforms and reduce the deficit while expanding the tax net.

An increase in the tax-to-DP ratio, a reduction in wasteful expenditure, and an improvement in the business environment to attract investment are necessary steps.

Mian Zahid Hussain further said that on the one hand, the country’s economic situation is very critical, and on the other hand, the founder of PTI wants to stop the IMF from forwarding a loan to Pakistan. He should condemn the events of May 9 and return to the national mainstream.

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