President Syed Mamnoon Hussain has said that government is working really hard to put the economy back on rail. Business community is backbone of the economy and its role is significant to achieve the economic targets set by the present government.

He was speaking at the Annual Goodwill Dinner of the Lahore Chamber of Commerce & Industry in honour of foreign ambassadors in Pakistan. The LCCI President Ijaz A. Mumtaz, Senior Vice President Mian Nauman Kabir, Vice President Syed Mahmood Ghaznavi Convener LCCI Standing Committee on Diplomatic, Foreign Missions & Embassy Liaison Muhammad Haroon Arora and Dean of the Ambassadors Rodolfo J. Martin-Saravia also addressed the most high-level gathering while the LCCI former presidents and Executive Committee Members were present on the occasion. As many as 66 Ambassadors, Diplomats and Federal Ministers graced the LCCI prestigious function.

Syed Mahmoon Hussain said that government was making out all efforts to make strengthen the economy and to promote trade & industry of the country. He said that policies of the government were in the right direction and economic indicators were portraying an encouraging picture.

President of Pakistan said that law and order situation and energy shortages were the major hurdles in the way of promotion of economic activities and the government was fully concentrating on addressing these issues.

Speaking on the occasion, the LCCI President Ijaz A. Mumtaz appreciated the efforts of government in war on terror and in maintaining the law and order in the country.

He said that Pakistan should be granted maximum market access on favorable terms so our businesses can create jobs and opportunities for people to be hopeful. While seeking the help of diplomats, the LCCI President said that Pakistan wants trade, not aid.   LCCI President said that mutual trade could be enhanced by exchanging trade delegations and organizing fairs and exhibitions. For that matter, visa regime needs to be liberalized for the bona fide businessmen in order for them travel frequently. He said that potentially, we have rich resource base, young population and locational advantages. We are situated in a high growth region.  Ijaz A. Mumtaz said that Pakistan is still going through the phase of energy crisis. Although the present government is working on war footing to address this issue but still a lot remains to be done. He said that ambassadors of all the countries should encourage their respective governments and private sectors to make investments especially in the energy sector of Pakistan.

LCCI President said that due to security issues, Pakistan has already paid a heavy price both in terms of not being able to maintain the desired level of investment and likewise gaining little success in inviting new investors to Pakistan but now things have taken the right path.

He urged the foreign diplomats to present a soft image of Pakistan in their respective countries and neutralize the negative affect which media has spread about us and also propagate Pakistan’s actual peaceful environment rather than the one conceived presently by the world.  Ijaz A. Mumtaz said that current government’s efforts in spreading harmony in the country are commendable.

He said that their investment friendly policies and their performance can be gauged from various indicators including improvement in the growth rate of GDP, expansion in foreign exchange reserves, rise in exports, stability in dollar exchange rate, considerable fall in fuel prices, increased tax collection, greater workers’ remittances, betterment in trade and budget deficits, maintaining CPI based inflation to single digit and upturn in major stock exchanges are some of the few examples.