KARACHI: In compliance with the State Bank of Pakistan’s directive, the Karachi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) on Friday submitted details of 2,500 stuck-up containers at ports out of a total of 5,700 for speedy clearance.
Chairman Businessmen Group (BMG) Zubair Motiwalla told Dawn that the details of stuck-up containers carrying industrial raw materials and essential food items are being compiled as per the format provided by the SBP for digital filing.
He hoped that the containers would start releasing from the ports from Monday as per the understanding reached with SBP Governor Jameel Ahmed during his visit to the chamber on Wednesday.
He again appealed to the SBP chief for urgent action as businesses were facing the worst crisis.
A meeting would also be held on Monday with the commerce ministry, customs and ports officials to further review the situation to facilitate the importers in terms of detention and other levies and expeditious clearance, Mr Motiwalla added.
SITE Association of Industry President Riaz Uddin criticised the government for not effectively handling the situation as the foreign exchange crisis has almost halted business activities across all segments of business, notably for the industries which contribute almost half of the national tax revenue.
He urged the SBP to lead from the front by taking firm and prudent actions and by issuing clear-cut instructions to banks for the provision of the much-needed dollars.
Under a force majeure, the SBP should allow local industries a moratorium on repayment of their debt, including interest payments and principal, until such time the import restrictions on non-essential industries are lifted, Mr Riaz suggested, urging the SBP to extend special loans to industries for meeting exigencies at zero interest rate, with a payback period of five years after lifting of forex restrictions.
Pakistan Yarn Merchants Association (PYMA) has informed the SBP Governor of the serious situation arising from the obstacles in the clearance of textile import raw materials.
The facility of letters of credit (LCs) should be restored to continue the production activities so that the clearance of imported raw materials can be possible.
In a letter to the Governor State Bank, PYMA Senior Vice Chairman Sohail Nisar pointed out that polyester filament yarn is the basic raw material of textiles and without which the manufacturing segment cannot operate.
Published in Dawn, January 21st, 2023
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