Automation cans bailout limping economy: Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry

Islamabad: Automation is the only way to ensure trade facilitation and bring country out of fiscal mess, Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI) said Saturday.

Government is facing a revenue shortfall of around 30 billion while inflows from coalition support fund and 3G auction remains doubtful, said Tariq Mahmood, Chairman FPCCI Standing Committees on Pharmaceuticals and Law and Order.

The worrisome situation may deteriorate further until automation is introduced which can help put economy back on track, he said.

Talking to women entrepreneurs at Islamabad Women’s Chamber of Commerce and Industry (IWCCI), he said that movement of goods should be improved to reduce cost, maximise efficiency, and boost Forex reserves as well as tax collections.

Tariq Mahmood who is also President Attock Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI) said rollback of Pakistan Automated Customs Computerised System (PaCCS) has complicated the overall process hurting business community and tax collections.

He said that reintroduction of semiautomatic and manual clearance procedures was a blow to the trade facilitation efforts which is resulting in delays, penalties, lost business opportunities and reduced competitiveness.

Improvement of transport infrastructure, eradication of corruption, modernization of customs administration, removal of non-tariff trade barriers, and other operational improvements should feature high on government’s agenda to boost economic activity, he demanded.

At the occasion, Samina Fazil, founder President IWCCI said that she is receiving complaints from importers after PaCCS was replaced with faulty Web Based One Customs (WeBOC).

The undependable software installed on terminals will pave way for losses, illegal payments and frauds, she said.

Samina Fazil said that collection is mainly based on imports and exports which must be facilitated.

Total revenues have fallen from 18 per cent of the GDP to 10 per cent during last two decades which shows that efforts to improve taxation and collections have backfired, she said.

FBR continue to shift burden to poor, all measures remained figure-oriented and the fiscal deficit may cross Rs 1800 billion this year, said Samina.

Absence of automation will lead to lack of transparency and the collectors will continue to milk the poor to realize unrealistic targets, she said.

For more information, contact:
Samina Fazil
Islamabad Women’s Chamber of Commerce and Industry
Mobile: +92323 5343199
Tel: +9251 2252256

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