Budget measures to promote agriculture, export sectors: FPCCI

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ISLAMABAD, Jun 5 (APP): The Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI) lauded the government budget measures of uplifting the agriculture sector of the country.

A special heed has been given to agriculture sector as the government has reduced prices of Urea and DAP fertilizers, President FPCCI, Abdur Rauf Alam said.

The prices of fertilizers now match with that of neighbouring country India, he said while addressing a press conference here.

He said the agriculture loan target of Rs 700 billion coupled with two percent reduction in mark-up will support the dwindling sector which has compromised GDP by 0.5 percent.

He was of the view that the incentives announced for agriculture would certainly provide relief to farming community.

The FPCCI President lauded the decision of the government to pay refunds and demanded that entire refunds must be paid during July and August 2016.

He announced unconditional support for the decision of the government to tighten noose against non-filers, broaden tax base and demanded reduced reliance on withholding agents.

He said that duty reduction on around two thousand items have been would help reduce cost of doing business and lauded the decision to give tax exemption for setting up new industry during next three years and demanded zero duty and tax on import of plants and machinery.

The President FPCCI lauded abolishing duties on import of laptops and computers to curb smuggling and decision to reverse remaining concessionary SROs.

Though, the federation welcomed majority of business and export friendly initiatives taken in the federal budget, however criticized some sectors which according to it have not been provided relief in the Budget 2016-17.

He was of the view that the rise in salaries and pensions and hike of Rs1000 in minimum wage of workers was insufficient.

He said that since the government has made five export zero-rated and it must also included largest export sector of rice in it and also pay heed towards small business and cottage sectors.