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Electronic goods prices soar as dollar becomes dearer
09-20-2008, 01:20 AM
Post: #1
Electronic goods prices soar as dollar becomes dearer
By Faryal Najeeb
KARACHI: Prices of electronics goods have hiked by a further 30-35 per cent following the rising dollar-rupee disparity and poor economic laws that have failed to keep check and balance leading to imports becoming painfully expensive.

Dealers of the electronics market are extremely critical of the new government and their laws that have led to the hike in interest rates, depreciation of rupee against the dollar and declining exports.

They stated that about 90 per cent of the various electronics goods available in the market, are manufactured in China and then imported to Pakistan as lack of facilities in the country discouraged local manufacturers from establishing their factories here.

Haroon and Kamran, dealers in white goods informed that prices had soared out of the common man’s reach. Kitchen appliances that were Rs1000 earlier were now priced between Rs3500-4000.

Similarly, 1.5 tonne air conditioners costing between Rs25,000-Rs30,000 earlier were now as high as Rs42,000-Rs47,000. Almost all electronics items of various brands available in the market had spiraled as expensive dollar made imports of these products more costly.

Salim Chaudhry, a working class customer explained that he had visited the electronics market to purchase a split air conditioner for his family. “I had a salary increase recently and therefore I thought that I would now be able to afford this luxury for them” he said. However, Salim was disappointed to note that prices had hiked beyond his reach once again and now he would have to wait some more months. “What upsets me is that the value of electronic products may shoot further by that time but I really cannot afford it right now either” he shared.

According to Salim, Pakistan was facing a critical situation since the consumers’ purchasing power was not in lieu to the rising prices and the gap was increasing between the two rapidly. Mohammad Rizwan and Mohammad Irfan, office bearers of Karachi Electronic Dealers Association were of the view that the government was solely responsible as they should consult with the business community of Pakistan before implementing laws concerned with their trade.

They said that the democratically elected government had disappointed the masses and “bureaucratic laws were keeping the elite happy while the poor were being crushed under the burden of inflation.”

“Take the reduction in petrol prices and the hike in diesel prices,” Rizwan continued, “It’s a perfect example of irrational decisions by the government that have burdened the common public rather than relieving it” he expressed. Rizwan further commented that it was disheartening to see that neighboring countries such as Afghanistan, Bangladesh and India had moved ahead of Pakistan with limited resources whereas, Pakistan continued to lag behind.

“There is no end to this spark of inflation that has been ignited and it will continue until some drastic action is taken by the government. Otherwise, prices will continue to hike at the same pace and there will come a time when people won’t be able to afford a single thing, which would ultimately lead to our business’s failure and the economy’s downfall” Irfan stated.

http://www.thenews.com.pk/daily_detail.asp?id=136596
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