PESHAWAR: Rejecting the government decision regarding declaring dollar as currency for exports to Afghanistan, the vegetable and fruit merchants have warned that if the decision was not taken back till March 23, they will launch a phase-wise protest.
Addressing at a news conference at Peshawar Press Club, All Pakistan Agriculture Produce and Traders Federation (APAPTF) President Malik Sohni said that the decision would have negative impacts on the economy, which was taken to only give benefit to major exporters and businessmen.
In wake of switching over the exports from local currency to US dollars, he said the fruit and vegetable merchants had suffered millions of rupees losses due to stoppage of their food-consignments for Afghanistan, Tajikistan and other Central Asian Republic countries. He said the new form-E dollar system was only financially benefiting to customs officials, rather to generate revenue for the provincial and national exchequer. He said the system would promote culture of corruption, which must need to be ended in the preliminary stage.
Flanked by vegetable and fruits exporters, and office-bearers of Torkhum Transporters Khidmatgar Association, Malik Sohni claimed that Rs80,000 as per vehicle was being charged from a truck loaded with food-items on Torkhum-border en route to Afghanistan, which was earlier Rs10,000 per truck. He demanded the government to revise the substantial increase in the taxes.
Malik Sohni said that due to unprecedented increase in taxes, the import and export businesses have badly affected and vegetable and fruits traders are compelled to stop businesses under the present circumstances. The APAPTF president said the government has been generating millions of rupees revenue on head of various taxes from general vegetable and fruit markets in the KPK.