ISLAMABAD: The business community has sought an incentives package for Balochistan to help accelerate its economy.
The demand came from Quetta and Chaman chambers at a time when the federal government announced a package for Khyber Pakhtunkhwain in the budget 2015-16 by offering certain relief measures.
In their separate letters sent to Finance Minister Ishaq Dar, both the chambers sought a “similar package for Balochistan” because the province is equally hit by economic instability due to deteriorating law and order situation and there was not a conducive environment for businesses due to violence and targeted and sectarian killings.
“The economy of Balochistan may collapse because of these depressing factors and it needs immediate support from the government,” the letter said.
In the latest budget, the federal government announced a five-year income tax holiday on all new manufacturing units set up in KP between July 1 and June 30, 2018.
The exports of perishable products, like fruits, vegetables, dairy products and meat shall be allowed against the rupee instead of the US dollar from next month.
The Quetta Chamber of Commerce and Industry (QCCI) said that the government announced the package for KP on the plea that the province shares a long border with Afghanistan, and Kabul is a productive and lucrative market for the business community of the province.
The same principle should be applied on Balochistan because it also shares a vast border with Afghanistan and there was an increasing trend of bilateral trade between the business community of the province and Afghanistan, it said.
The Chaman Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CCCI) in its letter mentioned the same grounds on which an economic package should be given to the province.
Published in Dawn, June 9th, 2015