KARACHI: Karachi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) President Shariq Vohra said on Tuesday that hike in K-Electric tariff would prove to be a serious blow to the city’s industry, which is still struggling to recover from the disaster caused by the lockdown imposed to contain Covid-19 pandemic.
Rejecting the federal government’s decision to increase KE’s tariff up to Rs2.89 per unit with effect from September 1, Vohra said that Karachiites are already suffering badly due to unbridled inflation, hence the hike in KE’s electricity bills is unacceptable and must be withdrawn immediately.
“Although the lawmakers are assuring that Prime Minister Imran Khan and his government are striving to control inflation through earnest efforts, it is really unfortunate that they have given a go-ahead to KE to raise its tariff,” he lamented. “The move will not only added to the hardships of business community but will also terribly affect the poor masses who are already overburdened by rising inflation.”
Expressing disappointment in the federal government, he said instead of providing relief to the already burdened citizens of Karachi, the government continues to take anti-business and anti-Karachi actions.
“It is a well known fact that the economic hub of Pakistan is passing through the worst possible crisis and suffering badly due to crumbling infrastructure, electricity load shedding, gas and water shortages etc. For God’s sake, please have mercy on poor citizens and the anxious business and industrial community of Karachi which is battling hard for survival,” he stressed.
Vohra pointed out that the cost of utilities in Pakistan is much higher as compared to regional countries, making Pakistani products uncompetitive in the international markets.
“The economy will only flourish if the cost of doing business is brought down by substantially reducing the tariffs of electricity, gas and water, besides lowering the exorbitant rates of taxes and duties,” he added.
He hoped that keeping in view all the above-mentioned facts, the government would review KE’s power hike notification and immediately withdraw the same, as it would be beneficial not only for the business community but also for people belonging to all walks of life.