LCCI reiterates it demand to initiate dialogues on RGST
LAHORE: The Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry Monday, yet again, urged the government to initiate dialogue on Reformed General Sales Tax as its deferment, though quite in line with LCCI demands and a step in desired direction, would not serve the very purpose of turning the economy around through an enabling business atmosphere.
In a statement issued here on Monday, the LCCI President Shahzad Ali Malik took a very strong exception to the government for observing a complete silence over LCCI demand for formation of committees for consultation over the issue of Reformed General Sales Tax as was raised by the LCCI at a meeting held in Islamabad on December 1. "The LCCI was the only chamber of commerce in the country that had called for deferment of the implementation of RGST and demanded the formation of committees for deliberations on the subject. It's very good that one part of LCCI demand has been accepted by the government and deferred a decision on this very controversial issue of the country's history but at the same time it was very unfortunate that government has adopted the policy of wait and see on the issue of formation of committees."
"It would have been better if the Standing Committee on Finance had accepted the LCCI stance fully vis a vis formation of committees of the stakeholders from trade and industry for the discussion on the issue of RGST with FBR."
The LCCI President Shahzad Ali Malik said that the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry from the very beginning hold the stance that the imposition of RGST without taking all the stakeholders onboard will not be fruitful. It had requested that a meeting between the LCCI, other stakeholders and the FBR was a must without which RGST would not be acceptable. The same stance was repeated at National Assembly Standing Committee on Finance on December 1 in Islamabad in the presence of representatives of all the Chambers of Commerce and other trade bodies.
The LCCI President said that the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry reserves the right to oppose the implementation of RGST tooth and nail if a process on consultation with the stakeholders was not initiated immediately and any decision was taken without the approval of the business community. Shahzad Ali Malik said that there was no second opinion about it that the Reformed General Sales Tax will be highly inflationary and destroy the industrial base of the country.
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