Pakistan has shown a significant improvement in the overall business confidence in recent months, revealed Business Confidence Index (BCI).
BCI survey has been conducted by the Overseas Investors Chamber of Commerce and Industry (OICCI). The survey was conducted for the period from May to July in nine major cities of the country.
The results of the survey depict that the overall Business Confidence Score (BCS) stood at 9 percent which was at -50 percent according to the survey that was conducted in May 2020. It covers 80 percent of GDP with a higher weight given to important business cities such as Karachi, Lahore, Rawalpindi-Islamabad, and Faisalabad.
The survey sample comprises 40 percent respondents from the manufacturing sector, 35 percent respondents from the service sector, and 25 percent from retailers and wholesalers. The increasing confidence of the business community is driven by these three sectors.
The growth in Business Confidence Index of manufacturing sectors was recorded from -48pc to 17pc, the growth in confidence of service sector was recorded -59pc to 6pc and it was from 0 to 44pc in the retail and wholesale sector.
Lockdown had badly affected the economic activities and after the restrictions, the majority of manufacturing units started working to the 100 percent production capacity.
The confidence of retailers and wholesalers also increased tremendously as the restrictions of lockdown had badly squeezed their businesses.
Meanwhile, Irfan Siddiqui, the President of Overseas Investors Chamber of Commerce and Industry said, “very dramatic turnaround in the confidence of businesses, including foreign investors. Despite challenging macro-economic indicators like high exchange rate and accelerated inflation partially offset by reduced bank interest rate, the latest BCI feedback strongly reflects the optimism of the business community moving forward, contrary to the pessimism in the previous edition.”
Along with the uplift of restrictions due to the Covid-19, the budget of the current fiscal year is also an important booster for the business community of the country. The last positive Business Confidence Index was witnessed in April 2018.