KARACHI: Restaurant owners on Monday appealed to Prime Minister Imran Khan to give them a relief package, saying the closure of food outlets across the country including Karachi owing to the coronavirus-led lockdown has triggered severe financial crunch.
In an appeal to the premier, convener of the All Pakistan Restaurant Association (APRA), Athar Chawla requested that all minimum wage earners and daily wagers be paid Rs12,000 under Ehsaas Programme, so that workers could be saved from starvation.
Chawla mentioned that there are about 100,000 restaurants throughout the country and 2 to 2.5 million people are employed in the industry.
“The continuous closure of restaurants for more than a month has led to a severe financial crisis that has severely affected the livelihoods of millions,” he added.
Chawla requested the government to waive the rent during the lockdown’s period and order a reduction of 50 per cent rent for the next six months through an ordinance besides withdrawing sales tax till December 2020.
He further appealed that sales tax be imposed @ 5pc including input tax from January 2021, while taxes on salaries and turnover taxes be waived off at least for 2020.
The taxes in utility bills also should not be charged up to December 2020, Chawala further suggested.
He requested the Prime Minister to defer EOBI, and waive social security contribution up to December 2020.