Lahore: Pakistan Muslim League senior central leader and former Deputy Prime Minister Ch Parvez Elahi has said that for the first time in the history of the country Utility Stores earned profit of Rs 2. 50 billion, enforced effective prices control system for welfare of the common man, as a result of which this organization during our tenure paid tax of Rs 21 billion to the govt.,common man fully benefitted from the Ramzan Package and those increasing prices of essential items during holy month were forced to keep the prices at reasonable level.
Addressing govt officers at a farewell party hosted in their honour, Ch Parvez Elahi said that promotion of local industry has always been his first priority, taking any decision in this regard he has never faced any difficulty because if the objectives are clear then it is easy to take decisions, in the trade with India car, motor cycle and tractor industry were given protection and turned down all pressure in this regard. He said this was done despite the Indian High Commission officials and many industrialists had requested him in the context of automobile industry that Indian products import should be allowed. He said since he considered this not to be of any benefit for the national industry so he had adopted nonflexible stance.
Continuing Ch Parvez Elahi said that we had decided in May 2011 in the larger national; interest to join the govt and proved this to be right decision, as a Senior Federal Minister after assuming the portfolio of the Ministry of Industry all ministers of the party were directed that people should see clear difference because of their good performance and now, the performance and success of Industry Ministry ‘s three big corporations namely Utility Stores, National Fertilizer Corporation (NFC) and Export Processing Zones Authority (EPZA) is before every one.
The former Deputy Prime Minister further said that during our tenure, in the first year reduced the prices of 300 items at the Utility Stores and provided subsidy of Rs 2 billion as a result of record sale of Rs 15 billion was achieved, likewise in the second year subsidy of Rs 2. 50 billion resulted in still higher record sale of Rs 22 billion and the Utility Stores Corporation earned profit of Rs 2. 5 billion and tax of Rs 21 billion was deposited in the public exchequer. He said that for the first time we had introduced the mega store system under one roof, got prepared feasibility report for opening of 2000 new Utility Stores all over the country and today the Utility Stores Corporation has become a profitable organization. He said likewise, Export Processing Zones network was expanded throughout the country, zones were established in many cities including Gujranwala and Faisalabad and liaison offices were opened in the chambers premises because of which foreign exchange of one billion dollars will be earned, Insha-Allah.
He pointedly stated that despite acute shortage of gas, no shortage of fertilizer was created and under a strategy price of fertilizer per bag was reduced by Rs 150, during one and half years period NFC ‘s ratio of profit remained 100 per cent while in the educational institutions of the NFC funds of Rs 2. 50 crore were released for needy and deserving students. Ch Parvez Elahi said that during our tenure in the govt, we fulfilled all our responsibilities honestly and appreciably, did all that was possible in the interest of the people and the country, if with the blessings of Almighty Allah we got an opportunity then in future also, we would continue to measures for welfare and well-being of the people and betterment and prosperity of the country with same dedication and good intentions.
Those present included PML leaders Muhammad Basharat Raja and Ch Zaheeruddin Khan, Lt General (R) Shahid, Secretary Industry Shafqat Naghmi, Managing Director Utility Stores Corporation Major General (R) Malik Muhammad Farooq, Chairman EPZA Saaadat S. Cheema, Chairman NFC Rizwan Mumtaz Ali, Tariq Shafiq Khan, Ahmad Nawaz Sukhera, Yousuf Nasim Khokhar, Khurrum Khan, G. M. Sikander and Nasir Hayat among others.