ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan is holding a meeting with the managing committee of the Overseas Investors Chamber of Commerce and Industry on Wednesday.—APP
ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan is holding a meeting with the managing committee of the Overseas Investors Chamber of Commerce and Industry on Wednesday.—APP

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Wednesday assured full support to foreign investors in resolving their difficulties and directed the Cabinet to examine how impediments could be removed at the earliest.

During an interactive session with a delegation of Overseas Investors Chambers of Commerce and Industry (OICCI), the prime minister shared salient points of the government’s economic recovery strategy.

He hoped the strategy would ensure sustainable economic growth in the medium term and set the country on a clear path for recovery and that the results of economic strategy will be visible during the next six to nine months.

Prime minister’s advisers on finance and commerce, minister for maritime affairs, governor state bank of Pakistan and senior officials of the ministries concerned also attended.

The PM Office in a statement said the premier highlighted that it is his government’s top priority to extend possible facilitation to the business community. He directed that problem areas highlighted by the delegation should be looked into for earliest possible resolution.

The prime minister appreciated the OICCI for sharing recommendations for addressing investors’ concerns and assured that the government will act upon the suggestions.

Acknowledging the contribution of OICCI members, PM Khan termed them as ambassadors of Pakistan who speak up about the positive aspects of the country and the opportunities in Pakistan at all international forums.

President OICCI Shazad Dada briefed the prime minister that the organisation was the largest chamber of commerce in Pakistan based on economic contribution and has always been in the forefront as the foreign direct investment (FDI) ambassador. The member companies account for third of the tax revenue, provide employment to over a million people and were important contributors to the exports revenue.

The delegation shared key findings of the recently released 2019 OICCI ‘Perception and Investment survey’, which indicated that an overwhelming 75 per cent of the respondents would recommend new FDI to their parent companies, which was a very positive sign for the economic outlook of the country.

The delegation requested PM Khan to direct the relevant persons to immediately address major issues of tax refunds and circular debt, actively and productively engage with key stakeholders like OICCI, ensure seamless coordination between federal and provincial legislations, and make Ease of Doing Business visible and accepted by business.

Dada emphasised the need for simplification of tax regime and providing execution capacity and funding to Digital Pakistan Programme for accelerated outcomes. Criticising the high number of regulators and regulations, the delegation called for reducing the number of regulators and regulations along with their capacity building and accountability.

Published in Dawn, March 12th, 2020

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