Karachi September 7 (Online): President Pakistan Businessmen and Intellectuals Forum Mian Zahid Hussain on Monday lauded the interest of Prime Minister Imran Khan and COAS Qamar Javed Bajwa in improving the situation in Karachi by investing billions in the infrastructure.
Both the important figures have visited Karachi, held meetings with politicians, businessmen and other stake holders and the government has announced a package of Rs1100 billion which has made everyone hopeful.
Talking to the business community, the veteran business leader said that the efforts of the COAS and PM will transform Karachi into a developed city which will also expand GDP, boost production, employment and revenue to reduce poverty.
Karachi is contributing Rs 2600 billion as taxes which can be boosted to Rs 4000 billion per year providing enabling environment but its infrastructure is in shambles. It us satisfactory that the weakness has been noticed at the highest level following the recent rains which have resulted in heavy losses, he said. He said that rain-related losses in other cities were comparatively lower as their infrastructure was better than Karachi which has been neglected by federal and provincial governments and local bodies for decades.
The veteran business leader noted that many packages were announced for Karachi in the past but none could be implemented therefore the government should ensure transparent implementation of the recently-announced package to avoid wastage. He said that all the stakeholders must rise above party interests and join hands to develop Karachi and national development is impossible unless Karachi remains underdeveloped.
The economy was improving following the coronavirus-linked lockdown but the rains and weak infrastructure of Karachi has reversed all the gains. The recent package will increase Karachi’s budget by 400 to 500 percent which must be utilised efficiently and in a transparent manner to develop the most important city of Pakistan, he demanded.
In the next step Karachi must be given financial autonomy which will go a long way in improving the overall situation, he said. He expressed satisfaction over the inclusion of federal, provincial and local government officials, members of the business community and army officials.
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