Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry welcomes Investment Conference

Lahore, November 04, 2015 (PPI-OT): The Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry has hoped that International Investment Conference in Islamabad and Lahore would pave way for much-needed foreign investment.

In a statement issued here Wednesday, the LCCI President Sheikh Muhammad Arshad, Senior Vice President Almas Hyder and Vice President Nasir Saeed said that such events should be meaningful as foreign investment plays a critical role in economic uplift of any country.

They said that by encouraging Foreign Direct Investment, Pakistan can gain technological advancement, knowledge and expertise from the global arena therefore every possible step should be taken to make this piece of land attractive for the foreign investors.

“Measures to encourage investment are especially important in the country as this is an area where we have long been at a disadvantage despite having all resources”, the LCCI office-bearers said.

They said that those obstacles should be removed through a positive approach and practical steps which are coming in the way of FDI in Pakistan and top of the list is the cost of doing business.

The LCCI office-bearers said that Pakistan ranks worse than other countries of the region as far as cost of doing business is concerned.

The LCCI President Sheikh Muhammad Arshad said severest-ever energy shortfall, bad law and order situation, institutional fragility and the political instability were the major factors keeping the foreign investors away.

He urged the government to initiate meaningful discourse with the private sector to boost up Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) that is not up to the mark.

“Though Pakistan ranks 62nd in the FDI-friendly countries that does not reflect its potential and available resources” he said adding that there is a dire need to promote economic vitality by strengthening private sector as internal dynamism has faded away due to acute energy shortage, deteriorating law and order and political instability.

Sheikh Muhammad Arshad said that rising risk perception about investing into Pakistan is hitting hard the entire economy and needs to be tackled through a comprehensive policy approach by involving Chambers of Commerce in the country.

The LCCI Senior Vice President Almas Hyder said that in the recent past, fall in Foreign Direct Investment has adversely affected the country’s economic growth. Government should adopt prudent measures to attract the foreign investment so that the country comes out of lopsided interest of foreign investors, he added.

He said that aggravating energy crisis was also spoiling not only the local investment scenario but also sending a very negative signal to potential foreign investors.

He said that a special committee comprising members of the Parliament, Presidents of Chambers of Commerce and Industry and representatives of sector-specific Associations should be formed to identify the solutions to attract foreign investment that is a prerequisite to economic growth.

The LCCI office-bearers said that the proposed committee should also be tasked to look into the existing policy framework and if there is a need to redesign new policies it should immediately initiate work on them.

He said key issues including power shortage and other vital factors, should be addressed on priority basis to improve the foreign investment condition to put the country on track of economic growth and development.

“At the same time the government should ensure that all institutions remain immune to any sort of undue interference as this will help improve quality of governance without which foreign investment cannot be attracted.”

The LCCI Vice President Nasir Saeed said that a number of sectors in Pakistan including infrastructure development, coal, energy, agriculture, livestock, textiles and pharmaceutical offer lucrative investment opportunities to foreign investors but unfortunately due to absence of a proper marketing strategy these opportunities are unattended even today.

For more information, contact:
Shahid Khalil
Information Department
Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI)
Lahore -54000, Pakistan
Tel: +92-42-111-222-499
Fax: +92-42-36368854