Karachi: The Union of Small and Medium Enterprises (UNISAME) has advised the SME sector in Pakistan to note that the forthcoming elections in the country are very crucial and the entrepreneurs and their families, have not only to exercise their right of vote diligently themselves but also influence friends and their trade circles to support the right candidates after studying their back ground and the economic and social uplift agenda of the party to which they belong.
President UNISAME Zulfikar Thaver said the forthcoming elections are very crucial for the destiny of the country and the entrepreneurs the big and the small must evaluate the candidate and the relevant party before casting their precious vote as election of aimless, hopeless, corrupt and uneducated persons will not change the present situation of lawlessness, corruption, terrorism and bad governance. The country cannot afford to have corrupt, uneducated and selfish legislators as representatives.
He said a country cannot progress unless it has leaders with vision and high integrity. Pakistan needs a very sound system of accountability and good economic policies to exploit the resources.
He lamented that the present state of affairs is terrible, there is lawlessness and the people have lost trust in the police and the superior law enforcing agencies are not playing their role.
He listed the prevailing corruption in the system which is damaging the entire socioeconomic fabric. Without the payment of speed money and bribe one cannot get even genuine work done he regretted.
The construction and development work has become a window for siphoning out money and inflated invoices are submitted for civil works and huge amount of material is stolen. There is huge corruption in the customs and the taxation system.
Thaver said despite the huge corruption and over spending of the government functionaries and politicians the country survived because of its agricultural base as almost every year there is a handsome crop of one or the other crop like cotton, wheat, rice, sugar, maize and other agricultural produce and because of which the GDP does not fall drastically. There has been no industrial growth. The country is importing most of the items on the free list and no serious effort to manufacture import substitution items has taken place. It is very unfortunate that butter, cheese, biscuits, cakes, stationery, footwear, clothing, light engineering, electronic goods are also imported which could be manufactured in Pakistan.
Thaver said the country has high potential for industrialization and agri-based industries if scientifically supported and promoted could change the destiny of Pakistan.
He reiterated that the entrepreneur needs an environment which includes safety, security, protected industrial estates. Finance at affordable mark up with easy repayment facilities, technological support which includes education, information and know how support at all levels of production, logistics and marketing.
The union has informed its members to only vote and support vigorously candidates and parties, which have an agenda for social and economic growth based on the recognition of the importance of the business community and the support facilities to be provided to the SMEs which includes trading, services, farming and manufacturing sector.