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Growth rate hike linked to promotion of agriculture: Shahid Rasheed Butt

Islamabad, March 13, 2016 (PPI-OT): Patron Islamabad Chamber of Small Traders Shahid Rasheed Butt on Sunday said achievement of satisfactory growth rate is linked to the promotion of agricultural sector which has been ignored by almost all the government. Agriculture had 53 percent share in GDP until 1950 which dropped to 31 percent in 1980 and now stands at 21 percent which indicates that it is in the bottom of priority list, he said.

Shahid Rasheed Butt said that dwindling share of agriculture which will go down with the collapse of cotton crop has stunned the economic growth. He said that GDP improvement without focusing on agriculture is a pipe dream and that feeding population exploding by two percent per annum require urgent steps.

The veteran business leader said that 5.5 percent growth rate target for the current year is unattainable at best while government will soon have to revise it down like the targets of investment, exports and revenue. Government has improved growth rate, forex reserves while workers’ remittances have been increased by six percent while it has failed to widen tax base and reform public sector enterprises.

He expressed concern over increasing dependence over loans and feared that country would not be able to service debt in five years and it will have to dance on the tunes of west to survive. The solution of all ills lies in reforms which seem not on the priority list of the government, he lamented.

For more information, contact:
Jahangir Akhtar
Secretary General
Islamabad Chamber of Small Traders and Small Industry
Office No, 9 Block E, Super Market, Islamabad
Cell: 0344-5111174

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