ISLAMABAD: The Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry has urged the government to withdraw the decision of hike in prices of petroleum products, as the move will hit the industry hard.
In a statement issued here the chief of apex body of all Chambers & Trade Associations Mian Anjum Nisar called for withdrawal of unwise and anti-industry decision.
“In response to the demand of business community, the government gave the industry a gift of fuel price hike on the eve of Eidul Azha, contrary to general expectations that the prices would be maintained in the wake of last month’s big jump of about 66 percent,” FPCCI President Mian Anjum Nisar said.
He observed that the last month’s step had taken the trade and industry by surprise because it was out of schedule and was not prompted by any summary moved by the Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority, which was the legal procedure.
He argued that 6.25 percent drop in interest rate in recent days have started to cut cost of production and bolster the debt repayment ability but the decision of hike in oil products’ prices for the second successive month will fade away the all relief announced by the central bank earlier for the business community.
He said the business community was already facing severe problems due to destruction of COVID-19 and in such a situation making hike of almost 70 percent in the prices of petroleum products in two months period is unjustified.
He said that the price of crude oil in the world market is still around $43 per barrel and as per calculations the ex-refinery price of patrol is worked out at around Rs50 per litre but the government increased the rate of petrol to more than Rs104 per litre, which is great injustice.
He said Pakistan exports cannot compete with China, Bangladesh and India where power tariffs were 7-9 cents, particularly in the post-corona economic slowdown as the country’s exports have been witnessing a major setback in present days due to high cost of electricity, which has become a major stumbling block in industrial development and boosting exports.