Islamabad traders threaten shutter-down strike on Sunday


ISLAMABAD: All Pakistan Markazi Anjuman-e-Tijaran President Ajmal Baloch and Traders Action Committee Information Secretary Khalid Chaudhry on Wednesday urged the traders to observe a shutter-down strike on July 13 against the taxes levied by the government in the federal budget for the current financial year.

They also called a meeting of local traders at Haven Height Hotel on Thursday, July 11, 2019, at 3 pm on this issue after which a briefing would be given to the media.

Later on, they would visit ICCI to hold a meeting with its office bearers.

Ajmal Baloch said that shutter down strike would not be against the government, rather it would be against the “IMF-dictated anti-traders’ tax measures” in the budget.

He said that the detail of conditions given in the staff report released by IMF on Monday was quite disturbing as the implementation of these conditions would further squeeze the business activities and the economy.

He said that the FBR chairman had been advising people on how to avoid tax payment and now he wanted to bring people into tax net within days, which was not feasible.

He said that the government should have trained people on tax matters and created awareness in them about the benefits of tax payment, but nothing of this sort was done while amnesty scheme also seemed to have flopped.

He said that FBR was not ready to listen to the traders due to which trading community was worried while people were also facing inflation.

He demanded that Prime Minister Imran Khan in consultation with traders should announce forthwith amendments in the budget; otherwise traders would go for complete shutter down on Saturday.

Khalid Chaudhry said that without bringing any reforms in the FBR, the government has handed over budget matters to the IMF.

He said an increase in dollar price has brought a new wave of inflation in the country while the imposition of new taxes in the budget has created great concerns in the business community.

He appealed to traders to observe shutter down strike on Saturday for protection of their business interests.