PESHAWAR: The devaluation of Pakistani currency against the US dollar has caused serious concern among the business community and general consumers as well, who fear unprecedented increase in rates of various daily use commodities.

Talking to mediapersons here on Wednesday, Sarhad Chamber of Commerce and Industry President Zahidullah Khan Shinwari said the dollar had crossed its previous record in the open market which would lead to increase in rates of maximum items and the ultimate sufferers would be the low-income groups.

Besides, he said ratio of interest on foreign loans would increase alarmingly, adding the economy depended on imports as maximum of the raw material in industrial sector was brought from abroad. Similarly, Pakistan would lose the market for its products internationally, and as a result the national economy would suffer badly.

Mr Shinwari urged the federal government to take immediate steps for bringing the dollar to a realistic level.

Anjuman-i-Tajiran Khyber Pakhtunkhwa president Sharafat Ali Mubarak said that the devaluation of Pakistani currency had really frightened the people as there was unemployment, poverty and general public would be unable to meet their routine expenditure with limited income.

However, he suggested that the government should immediately ban unnecessary imports and take effective steps to support local industry. He said the people should also avoid purchase of imported items.

Rehmatullah Khan, a jobless youth, said the rulers were least bothered to take effective steps for welfare of the common people, especially in the wake of increase in the dollar rate. He said the poor people, particularly those unemployed, were unable to purchase daily use commodities and the price hike would add to their misery.

Published in Dawn, March 22nd, 2018

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