ISLAMABAD             -           Prime Minister Imran Khan on Monday said the government has decided to make Pakistan an industrial power and it will provide all possible assistance to help industrialists.

Talking to a representative delegation of the newly-elected presidents of different chamber of commerce and industries of the country, the prime minister said that from the day first, the government had decided to transform Pakistan into an industrial power and its economic team would extend all facilities and support to the industrialists.

Minister for Energy Omar Ayub Khan, Adviser on Commerce Abdul Razzak Dawood, Investment Board Chairman Syed Zubair Gilani and Federal Board of Revenue Chairman Syed Shabbar Zaidi were present during the meeting, PM office media wing said in a press release.

Upon a proposal of the delegation, the prime minister directed the FBR chairman to hold open house on each Monday and hear the issues faced by the industrialists.

Imran Khan appreciated investment in the information technology, Halal food and medicines, directing the concerned ministries to provide all facilities in this regard.

The entourage presented proposals over tax refunds, supply of gas and power to the industries, revival of sick industrial units, special economic zones and increase in exports.

They also appreciated the measures taken by the prime minister and the government’s economic team for the promotion of business and industrialisation in the country.

The delegation included Muhammad Ahmed (Islamabad chamber), Malik Muhammad Ashraf (Sialkot chamber), Rana Muhammad Sikandar Azam (Faisalabad chamber), Mian Umar Slaeem (Gujranwalla chamber), Ali Hussain Asghar (Lahore chamber), Mir Naveed Baloch (Gwadar chamber), Shahid Hussain (Khyber Pakhtunkhwa chamber), Rizwan Ali (Gilgit-Baltistan chamber) and others.

Earlier, presiding over a meeting on licensing regime in the province in Islamabad, the prime minister has directed to abolish around 150 licences required for various business activities at the local level. He also directed the provincial governments to eliminate 74 different licenses of this nature.

“In the current system the businessmen were required to obtain around 150 different licenses from metropolitan and municipal corporations, town committees and other institutions. Complaints of corruption, bribery and harassment of small traders were very common in the licensing system,” the PM was told during the meeting.

Imran Khan directed to simplify the process for necessary licences and introduction of automated system by employing modern technology.

He expressed concern over the complex licensing regime and said the requirement of licences for the businesses of grocery, cloth and bakery was equal to creating difficulties for the common man. He also emphasized to complete the process of eliminating unnecessary licences in 30 days.

He said as the condition of licenses for small grocery, cloth and `Kulcha’ (bread) shops were tantamount to creating difficulties for common man, such 74 unnecessary licenses should immediately be eliminated.