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January 28, 2021

Cement, steel price hike slammed

Business

January 28, 2021

KARACHI: The Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI) has deplored the unusual hike in cement and steel prices and urged the government to safeguard the advantages envisioned in Prime Minister Imran Khan’s initiative for the construction sector, a statement said on Wednesday.

Nasir Khan, vice president of the FPCCI expressed concerns over the sharp rise in cement and steel prices, which is damaging the incentives offered by the prime minister under a fixed tax regime for the construction industry.

Cement and steel are the main raw materials for the construction industry, he said, adding that price of a cement bag has gone up to Rs500 to Rs700 and steel prices have also jumped up to Rs145,000/ton, ultimately increasing the construction cost.

This will have a negative impact on the prime minister’s Naya Pakistan low-cost housing scheme and defeat the government’s efforts to strengthen the national economy.

Khan termed the increase in the prices of cement and steel unjustified, and said, most of the raw materials are locally available.

He proposed to waive Customs duty on the import of cement and steel for at least three months to sustain the benefits of the fixed tax regime for the construction sector.