SRINAGAR: In a bid to woo the business community, the opposition National Conference today announced that it will set up a committee to engage with traders and take up their issues on a regular basis.
The announcement came as the newly elected executive body of the Kashmir Chamber for Commerce and Industry (KCCI) called on National Conference (NC) working president Omar Abdullah at the party head office here.
The KCCI highlighted various systemic issues and challenges confronting the Valley’s business and traders’ community, a NC spokesman said here.
He said that Omar assured the KCCI executive body that the party would continue to highlight all issues of the business community and seek their redressal.
“On this occasion, the NC working president also announced that the party would nominate a senior party committee to specifically engage with the KCCI and the business community on a regular basis and especially before the start of the budget session,” the spokesman said.
This would be done “so that the party can raise pertinent issues and seek specific policy interventions as per the actual requirements of the business community,” he said.
The spokesman said that the KCCI delegation, headed by its senior vice president Nasir Hamid Khan, highlighted the challenges being faced by the business community after the implementation of the Goods and Services Tax (GST).
They also briefed the NC working president about the general economic slowdown that had severely impacted the business community.
On his part, Omar said, “Government should be open to your inputs and suggestions and incorporate them in policy decisions as you are the primary economic stakeholders in the state’s journey towards progress and growth.”
“The business community has faced successive challenges in the past few years due to the 2014 floods, then the demonetisation issue and that was eventually compounded by the implementation of GST in the state and the unrest of 2016,” he noted.
Omar alleged that the state government had gotten into a habit of giving false assurances that it could not and cannot implement.
“The state government should now at least try to make the best out of a bad situation of their own making and do something to give relief and reprieve to the business community by taking up these issues in the Central GST Council,” the NC working president said.