Appreciation of Rupee: ICCI for reducing POL prices to promote business activities

  • March 22, 2014
Islamabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry has called upon the government to pass on the benefit of appreciation of Pak rupee against the dollar by making at least 10 percent reduction in the POL prices.

Khalid Chaudhry, Acting President, Islamabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry appreciated the prudent policies of the government due to which the rupee has appreciated from Rs.108 about two months back to below Rs.99 in the interbank market. He said the rising strength of the rupee against the dollar has created good room for the government to bring down POL prices by up to 10 percent in order to provide relief to business & industry as well as to the general public.

He said whenever the price of oil went up in the international market, government tended to immediately pass on the whole impact to the domestic consumers. Now there is a declining trend in the price of crude oil in the global market and government should pass on its benefit to the consumers by reducing POL prices in the domestic market. He said government has already saved billions of rupees since the appreciation of rupee by not passing on its benefit and stressed that government should not waste further time to deprive people of this direly needed relief.

Khalid Chaudhry said high oil price is the major factor for very high power tariff in Pakistan which has enhanced cost of production and badly impacted the manufacturing activities. He said tariff costs in China, India, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka are 8.5 cents, 11.3 cents, 7.3 cents and 9.2 cents respectively while in Pakistan tariff costs are more than 14 cents making our tariffs one of the costliest in the region.

He said the exorbitant electricity rates has caused high inflation and brought untold miseries to the common man while business activities have also suffered. It is high time that government should come up with relief measures for businesses and consumers. Highlighting the benefits of making cut in POL prices, he said it will reduce cost of doing business, promote exports, encourage more investment, create new jobs, enhance purchasing power of consumers, help trade & industry to flourish and accelerate economic growth of the country.