Karachi: The business community must take ownership of the future of the country by supporting policies that are conducive to industrial growth. Governments complete their tenure and leave, but the business community must ensure that policies that are essential for industry remain in place, by lobbying with the Government of the time for their interests.
This was stated by Dr. Asim Hussain, Federal Minister of Petroleum and Natural Resources during a visit to the Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry Head Office in Karachi on Saturday, October 29, 2011, where he met prominent members of the business community.
FPCCI was represented by Senator Haji Ghulam Ali, President-FPCCI, Mr. Tariq Sayeed, VP-CACCI; Mr. S.M. Muneer, President-IPCCI; Mr. Iftikhar Ali Malik, VP-SAARC CCI; Mr. Dawood Usman Jakhura and Mr. Khalid Tawab, VPs-FPCCI.
The President-FPCCI extended Dr. Hussain a warm welcome and thanked him for visiting FPCCI to discuss issues relating to petroleum, gas and CNG which were being faced by the business community.
While offering their comments, all senior business leaders mentioned the problems they were facing with regard to availability of energy to industry, and expressed hope that meetings such as today’s would help to remove some of these hurdles.
In his address to the business community, Dr. Hussain conceded that the business community was functioning under very troubled circumstances. At the same time, he urged the business community to assume a more proactive role in assuming ownership of government policy.
He agreed that OGRA and Explosives should lie with the Ministry of Petroleum, and asked the business community to support this demand.
With regard to progress on the Iran Pakistan pipeline, he acknowledged delay in the pace with which the project was proceeding, but asked the business community to exercise patience, given the sensitivity of issue.
At the same time, he assured the business community that the project was moving ahead, and stated as an example that on October 28, the Government had appointed as Financial Advisor for the project, a consortium of local and Chinese firms.
As another indicator of steps taken by the Government to address the gas shortage issue, he stated that over the past 40 years, there had been no Gas Theft Law. However, such a law had recently been formulated and passed by the National Assembly a few days back. It is presently with the Senate.
He furthermore stated that on Wednesday (November 2), the Government was holding a meeting of all stakeholders to arrive at decisions to the problems affecting them.
Dr. Hussain agreed that there existed ambiguity with regard to the ownership of resources under the Eighteenth Amendment and stressed that they must be removed. Similarly, he agreed that a coherent policy on LPG was needed for Pakistan.
He also expressed the need for alternative energy to be placed under his Ministry, as was standard in other countries, such as India.
Furthermore, he suggested that FPCCI should set up a think-tank which should work on a continuous basis and advise the Government on issues and policies. FPCCI welcomed the suggestion and would set up this think-tank soon.
For more information, contact:
Muhammad Raza Khan,
Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI)
FPCCI, Capital Office, Islamabad,
Former President, Haripur Chamber of Commerce,
Founder President, Islamabad Chamber of Commerce.
Tel: FPCCI +92-51-2251891-3. Fax +92-51-251894
Tel: Business +92-51-4434200-5. Fax +92-514434203