FPCCI president Irfan Iqbal Sheikh said Prime Minister Mian Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif had assured the business community at the time of his assuming charge of the Prime Minister’s office that the country is caught in low production and economic growth cycle; and, needs to work hard citing the quote of the father of the nation Quaid-i-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah, i.e., “Work, work and only work and we are bound to success.” FPCCI President recalled that the practical manifestation of the cited quote by the PM came as an announcement to call off Saturday as a holiday in order to provide better and more efficient public services. However, that decision had to be reversed after some reconsideration; while the fact of the matter is that economy of Pakistan is not in such a state and at liberty to observe two weekly holidays like prosperous countries. Irfan Iqbal Sheikh maintained that now the government has announced five holidays on account of Eid Ul Azha without consulting the business, industry, and trade community of Pakistan; who are already battling with electricity & gas load shedding; multiplier effects of electricity and petroleum prices; politico-economic instability; poor law & order and abysmal cost & ease of doing business indices. Irfan Iqbal Sheikh informed that Pakistan does not fare well on the productivity index either as per the international labour organization (ILO), Pakistan’s labour productivity is estimated at half of that of China; and, much less than other regional and sub-regional competitors. He added that the private sector also has to bear this burden and still compete in regional and international markets. FPCCI Chief apprised that Pakistan is struggling to increase its exports swiftly, work towards import substitution and bridge the ever-increasing trade deficit – which clocked at $48.3b for the fiscal year 2021 – 22. It is pertinent to note that the trade deficit is the single most important factor in the unsustainable current account deficit (CAD) of Pakistan. Irfan Iqbal Sheikh has demanded that the government should immediately withdraw the notification of five Eid holidays; and, make Saturdays fully functional with banks & other financial institutions, legal system, and trade & economic facilitation organizations providing full services; and, enabling the trade and industry to work and produce at the maximum capacity; otherwise, continuing with five Eid holidays will mean a productivity loss of 16pc for the month of July for export-oriented and allied industries. Furthermore, spill over effects of the productivity loss in July 2022 will continue to hamper production in the months to come. Irfan Iqbal Sheikh noted with profound concerns that unrestricted and unscheduled load shedding has already resulted in a loss of more than ab dollars in exports; and, many export orders are in danger of being delayed or cancelled. President FPCCI has reiterated that the abovementioned swift and targeted interventions are absolutely needed to save the exports, manage trade & current account deficits, revenues, employment, and economic growth from further deterioration.