Devaluing rupee will not boost exports, reduce deficit: FPCCI

Abrupt erosion in exchange rate unfortunate, unacceptable.



The Federation of Pakistan Chamber of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI) on Thursday voiced concern over the sudden erosion in the exchange rate terming it against the national interests and totally unacceptable.

The local currency has nosedived after remaining stable for three and a half years and now a US dollar is being sold close to Rs109.50 in the open market which has created uncertainty, it said.

The government should immediately take steps to stabilise the exchange rate and take action against the elements who are trying to exploit the current politically uncertain environment, said Chairman FPCCI Regional Committee on Industries Atif Ikram Sheikh.

In a statement issued here today, he said that fall of the rupee will not improve exports and it will not help authorities tackle record trade deficit.

He said that export policy should be adjusted to improve export competitiveness leaving exchange rate unchanged, as a contrary measure may very well damage masses by making imports costly and stoking inflation.

Atif Ikram Sheikh said that the uncertainty has hit importers and masses, while many currency dealers exploiting the situation, calls for intervention by authorities. Masses should not be made to pay the price for wrong economic decisions and failure of the export sector, he demanded.

Our export sector has lost competitiveness due to lack of support and it is addicted to subsidies, tax breaks, bailouts, and currency devaluation, he observed.

He said the situation will lead the government to borrow more to stabilise FOREX reserves which will be equivalent to economic suicide.