Karachi, May 30, 2023 (PPI-OT): UNISAME expresses concern over soaring dollar rates, calls for innovative measures Pkrevenue.com
May 29, 2023. The Union of Small and Medium Enterprises (UNISAME) has raised alarm over the escalating issue of the exchange rate, urging the Ministry of Finance to take immediate action.
Zulfikar Thaver, President of UNISAME, highlighted the detrimental impact of the surging dollar value on the SME sector, making it unaffordable for businesses. This has led to significant challenges for small and medium enterprises, including the high costs associated with importing essential materials. Additionally, commercial banks have displayed reluctance in opening letters of credit, adding to the sector’s struggles.
While acknowledging the detailed explanation provided by Senator Ishaq Dar, the Federal Finance Minister, Thaver emphasized the need for innovative strategies. One proposed solution involves tapping into the foreign currency reserves of overseas Pakistanis and unlocking the funds hidden within the country’s lockers. This approach, if implemented, could result in a noteworthy achievement in resolving the issue.
UNISAME members have engaged in discussions with prominent businessmen who possess substantial dollar reserves. These individuals have expressed the importance of government assurance through a special amnesty program and a disciplined fiscal policy. Despite efforts by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to promote financial discipline, the government has been hesitant to reduce expenses and maintain a lavish lifestyle. Recent signs of curbing and tailoring expenditures, however, have proven effective.
Thaver emphasizes that businessmen, like other citizens, have a deep love and concern for Pakistan. To facilitate positive outcomes, he suggests that the Ministry of Finance and the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) establish a committee for constructive dialogue with these individuals. A friendly policy that recognizes them as well-wishing supporters rather than wrongdoers can help foster cooperation and collaboration.
Notably, Malik Bostan, President of the Forex Exchange Association, has made a generous offer. UNISAME proposes acting as an intermediary, facilitating a meeting between the SBP, Ministry of Finance, and concerned businessmen. This gathering aims to establish a mutually agreeable framework that addresses the concerns and interests of all parties involved.
UNISAME assures policymakers that industrialists are enthusiastic about contributing to the growth of the economy. However, they have concerns about potential misconceptions regarding their intentions, which may result in authorities scrutinizing their undisclosed dollar holdings. Furthermore, they seek the return of their dollars after a specified period, with or without any profit, and without any attached conditions.
Experts need to convene and address the prevailing uncertainty surrounding the IMF, despite the Finance Minister’s assertion that all conditions have been satisfactorily met. By bringing together key stakeholders and leveraging their collective expertise, a resolution can be devised to mitigate the challenges posed by the soaring dollar rates.
UNISAME’s expression of concern highlights the urgent need for the Ministry of Finance to tackle the escalating issue of the exchange rate. By exploring innovative measures, fostering constructive dialogue, and assuring industrialists, a path towards a sustainable solution can be charted. It is crucial for all stakeholders to work together in resolving this issue and mitigating the impact on the SME sector and the overall economy.
For more information, contact:
Union of Small and Medium Enterprises (UNISAME)
75/1 3rd Commercial Street, Phase IV, D.H.A.,
Cell: +92-300-8245307, +92-321-8245307
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