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Budget to offer nothing but disappointment?

Islamabad:The Pakistan Economy Watch (PEW) on Wednesday said upcoming budget will offer nothing but disappointment.The government which is finding difficult to fulfil its debt obligations would be unable to provide any relief to masses and business community, it said.

Despite a severe financial crisis in sight, the tax-exempted sector will continue to enjoy free ride without discharging their responsibilities, said Dr. Murtaza Mughal, President PEW.

Drying foreign inflows and failure to widen tax net will leave government with few options but to rely on borrowing from State Bank and other commercial banks, he added.

He said that tax authorities with be asked to take stringent measures to further squeeze honest taxpayers for raising funds.

Dr. Murtaza Mughal said that claims of government functionaries to provide relief to masses and reduce unemployment will remain confined to slogans while industrial sector including textiles will not get any meaningful bailout package.

Government reliance on domestic resources will continue to deprive productive sectors of cheap credit which will result in lost competitiveness, he warned.

He said that rulers would remain engaged in political struggle while neglecting urban masses and pleasing rural elite.

Dr. Murtaza Mughal said that MQM has made history by presenting shadow budget. Other political parties should follow the suit from the next fiscal to demonstrate concern towards economic situation.

Not all of the MQM’s proposals are workable notwithstanding it was a very positive move on the part of a political party, he said.

He said that on-serious attitude of rulers; absence of long-term strategy regarding socio-economic uplift and reluctance to introduce reforms will keep promised economic growth a far cry in the next fiscal.

However, the short budget speech will have many claims about magical transformation of the economy, said Dr. Mughal.

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