The Islamabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry (ICCI) has urged the government to extend the business timings in markets till 10:00pm and for food outlets/restaurants up to 12:00am to help business activities flourish smoothly and revive economy. ICCI President Sardar Yasir Ilyas Khan in a statement on Saturday said that with the increase in vaccination of people, the average positivity rate of Covid-19 pandemic has now come down, reflecting an improvement; therefore, it is important that the timings for businesses should be enhanced to give ample time to customers for shopping and avoid overcrowding in commercial areas. He said that shopping malls across Pakistan are ensuring strict implementation of standard operating procedures (SOPs) by adopting the policy of ‘no mask-no entry’ and they should be allowed to operate as per normal working hours for 7 days a week. He said that cinemas worldwide have been opened by maintaining social distancing between seats and the government should open them in Pakistan too with 60-70 percent capacity of viewers as these businesses have been closed for more than a year and are now on the verge of bankruptcy. He further said that Pakistan has already suffered an estimated economic loss of Rs2.5 trillion in 2020 and is anticipated to suffer additional loss of over Rs1 trillion this year due to restrictions on businesses while the livelihoods of over 18 million workers have been badly affected. Therefore, it is high time that the government should remove all restrictions on businesses to save businesses from further damages, workers from job losses and economy from plunging into further recession. Meanwhile, ICCI Senior Vice President Fatma Azim along with a delegation of restaurants association held a meeting with National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) authorities and stressed that indoor and outdoor dining in restaurants should be allowed as these restaurants all over the Middle East and most of the Europe are allowing indoor dining with acrylic or glass partitions between each table to maintain safe distance. She said that the restaurant associations and all shopping malls in Pakistan are also willing to install the same acrylic partitions to maintain social distancing between each table, therefore, they should be allowed indoor and outdoor dining up to 12:00am.