Indian imports, reduced petroleum prices to provide relief to masses

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Islamabad ,April 01, 2021 : Former President ICCI Shahid Rasheed Butt on Thursday supported the decision of  Prime Minister Imran Khan regarding lockdown terming it in the interest of masses as country cannot afford general lockdown.

Imports of sugar and cotton from India will also provide relief to masses and help the textile sector run on full capacity to boost production, exports and employment, he said.

Shahid Rasheed Butt also hailed the decision of the Prime Minister to facilitate the masses get bank loans for their houses on soft terms and conditions.

He said that masses were facing problems due to the reluctance of some banks to provide housing loans therefore the PM has directed the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) and National Bank to take steps to provide relief to the masses.

SBP has been asked to push commercial banks to lend, as the pace of advances is not satisfactory due to risk factor, he added.

He said that one reason behind the reluctance of banks is the weak legal mechanism to recover the loans given to masses for the construction of their houses.

He noted that banks have informed the government about their reservations while the government has promised to hammer out the issue.

The business leader noted that presently there is a shortage of ten million houses while the need is increasing by three hundred and fifty thousand units per annum.

Improving the foreclosure laws will trigger construction activities across the country supporting some forty allied industries reducing unemployment and increasing revenue to boosting the GDP.

Despite measures taken by the central bank, commercial banks will remain reluctant to support the Naya Pakistan Housing Programme, a flagship project of the Government, unless laws are improved to their satisfaction, he said.