Pak business honchos give mixed reaction to Musharraf’s emergency declaration

November 14th, 2007 - 8:24 am ICT by admin  
While some said that it was the need of the hour to control a deteriorating law and order situation, others said the economy could take a beating and predicted a slide in foreign investment flows.

Zubair Tufail, Vice President of Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry, was quoted by The News as saying that the declaration of emergency was a very good step which the government should have taken months ago in view of the state of lawlessness.

“Look at what is going on in Swat and other parts of Pakistan. I think the government had no option but to impose an emergency and this was the only way to control the deteriorating situation,” he said.

He further went on to say that the negative impact of the order would be short, while in the long run it would prove to be good for the businesses with laws being implemented as they should be.

Zubyr Soomro, the President of the Overseas Investors Chamber of Commerce and Industry, countered Tufail’s view by predicting that Pakistan was going to suffer greatly on the world map.

Shamim Ahmed Shamsi, the President of the Karachi Chamber of Commerce and Industry, said businesses would not be threatened, as the administration policies would remain intact.

Shahid Hasan Sheikh, the President of the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry, said the emergency would create an atmosphere of discontinuity in industry, and as far as he was concerned,it was a bad news for him.

“Right now, after having spoken to several other businessmen based in Lahore, there is an absolute chaos here,” he remarked.

Masood Naqi, the Chairman of the Korangi Association of Trade and Industry, was quoted as saying that businesses would not to be affected directly.

“Pakistan has been unstable for the past six months and after the emergency, it is likely to see some stability now. I think, the future is bright for businessmen as eventually the world will see that matters are falling into place again and they would find Pakistan a much better place for their investments,” he was quoted, as saying.

Rubina Rasheed, President National Women Forum said that internationally Pakistan was worse off, nevertheless there would be continuity in businesses now and the momentum at which trade was progressing in the country was not likely to be disturbed.

Zubair Motiwala, former President Karachi Chamber of Commerce and Industry said: “Until we get established and until we have stability, we will not achieve anything and our politics will continue to directly affect our imports and exports.”

“We are heading towards a better future as we are likely to progress somewhere at least as the earlier four months were wasted,” he added.

In Islamabad and Rawalpindi, the business community did not react much on the issue of emergency.

“The country will lose political credibility, as suspending the basic human rights will definitely result in loss of credibility of the country in general and exports in particular,” commented economist and prominent industrialists Eng M A Jabbar.

Exporters expressed worry and concern over the declaration of emergency in the country and have even said that it would be better if the government withdrew research and development from the exports sector.

“This emergency in the country would destroy our exports,” said Fawad Ijaz Khan, former chairman of the Pakistan Leather Garments Manufacturers and Exporters Association.

Economists were of the view that the financing of the country’s mega projects would also be affected whereas all large scale manufacturing sector, especially automobile, cement, construction and real estate would be badly affected resulting in massive unemployment in the country. (ANI)

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