LCCI and Punjab Govt for joint efforts
Punjab Government and the Lahore Chamber of Commerce & Industry would work hand in hand to facilitate the business community. It was decided at a meeting between Secretary Environment Iqbal Chohan, LCCI Senior Vice President Almas Hyder and Vice President Nasir Saeed here at the Lahore Chamber of Commerce & Industry on Monday.
Director General Environment Protection Agency Punjab Dr. Javed Iqbal, Director Environment Protection Department Punjab Nasim-ur-Rehman, former LCCI Presidents Shahid Hassan Sheikh, Sohail Lashari, Executive Committee Members were also present on the occasion. The LCCI EC members including Amjad Ali Jawa, Dr. Qurat ul Ain, Abdul Razzak and Waqar Ahmed Mian took up the issues being faced by their sectors with Secretary Environment who assured to resolve them without any further delay.
Secretary Environment Iqbal Chohan said that the environmental issues were of prime importance therefore the industrialists particularly the export-oriented industry should tackle them on priority in the wake of GSP Plus status granted to Pakistan by European Union.
He said that the Punjab government would extend every possible help to the industrial sector in this regard. He said that compliance to environmental standards was a prerequisite to do business with the developed world therefore the Environment Department was working tirelessly to educate the business community on these standards. The Secretary said that the government was encouraging the establishment of low- cost water treatment plants and plants to control the pollution issues. He suggested to form a committee for establishment of water treatment plants in the industrial estates through public-private partnership.
He urged the Lahore Chamber of Commerce & Industry to hold seminars and workshop to create awareness amongst its members regarding environmental issues and latest technologies for water treatment etc. He said that Punjab government will support such initiatives in the larger interest of the economy.
Speaking on the occasion, the LCCI Senior Vice President Almas Hyder said that the field staff of Punjab Environment Protection Department should be trained to give awareness to the business community regarding environmental issues and their soft solutions. He said that a number of LCCI members are constantly complaining against the notices being served on them by Environment Department.
They are very concerned about the unduly strict standpoint taken by the concerned officials. Almas Hyder said that industry cannot afford water treatment plants as they involve a very high cost therefore the government should come forward and put up water treatment plants in all the industrial areas. The LCCI Senior Vice President said that the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry was taking all possible measures to educate its members about the environmental standards in vogue the world over. He said that the cases should not be registered against the businessmen on environmental issues as the industrialists always try their level best to comply with all government rules and regulations.
The LCCI Vice President Nasir Saeed said that the members from Katar Band Road are facing acute problems. They are running their industries there for the last 30 to 40 years. A couple of years ago, in close proximity of these industries, the Irrigation Department established a residential colony.