LAHORE: Advisor to Prime Minister for Commerce, Textile, Industry, Production and Investment Abdul Razak Dawood has said a long-term integrated export strategy is adopted to encourages investment in manufacturing for producing export surpluses, encourages value addition, and resolves long-standing issues like competitiveness and productivity
He was speaking at the LCCI Export Trophy – 2019. LCCI President Almas Hyder, Senior Vice President Khawaja Shahzad Nasir and Vice President Faheem-ur-Rehman Saigal also spoke on the occasion while Executive Committee Members, former office-bearers and businessmen were present on the occasion. .
In their respective addresses, Advisor to PM Abdul Razak Dawood and LCCI President Almas Hyder were of the view that country’s survival lies in exports to get rid of the economic stress.
“We are struggling a titanic”, Abdul Razak Dawood said and added that we are rectifying the things at economic front that went wrong in past. While giving an overview of economy in past, he said we had a trader led importation consumption driven economy in past. Uncontrolled imports, under invoicing, contrary to the fact tariff structures and irrational exchange rate dwindled the economy. He aid that big industries stopped manufacturing and started import because there was 5% duty imposed on finished goods as compare to 20% on the import of raw materials.
Abdul Razak Dawood said that responsibility of the government is to correct the things and if we don’t do this, we would continue suffering.
He said that our survival lies in exports. It is government’s responsibility to give businessmen market access. He said that China has agreed to extend duty free access on 313 tariff lines.
“I have targeted 5 countries USA, Canada, Japan, Korea and Australia to get market access for Pakistani businessmen”, the Advisor to PM added. He said that engineering and other sectors are being focused for exports. It is a good to see that Pakistan is export tractors to Mozambique, Tanzania, Kenya etc.
LCCI President Almas Hyder said that current account deficit is the biggest problem of Pakistan. Huge gap between imports and exports created issues like currency devaluation, rise in interest rates and various others.
He said that exports have a paramount importance in Pakistan’s economy as these are the main source of revenue generation (around 24 billion dollars) and employment creation. Exports are also imperative for maintaining the balance of payment stability of our country.
“As Pakistan aims to become a competitive economy in the region and grow above 7%, it is imperative for us to enhance our export revenues to deal with multi-dimensional economic challenges that have confronted our nation”, the LCCI President added.
He said that it is however a bitter reality that Pakistan is far behind the regional economies in export revenues. While our exports are stagnant around 24 Billion Dollars, the exports of Bangladesh have surpassed 40 Billion Dollars. Turkey, whose exports were comparable to Pakistan in 1980s, is now fetching more than 165 Billion Dollars in export revenues. Vietnam’s export revenues stand at $290 billion.
He said that there is need for a long-term integrated export strategy that encourages investment in manufacturing for producing export surpluses, encourages value addition, and resolves long-standing issues like competitiveness and productivity. Special focus in the new export strategy should be given to technology intensive industries with immense export potential e.g. Sports Goods, Surgical, Auto parts, Chemicals, Value Added Textile, Ceramics, Cutlery, Engineering Goods and pharmaceuticals etc.
Almas Hyder said that there is also a need to enhance competitiveness of our Industry through a rational Tariff Regime that promotes Industrialization and an efficient system of Refund Payments which would not squeeze the working capital of Industry.
Earlier, Abdul Razak Dawood conferred LCCI export awards to the best exporters for various categories.
Chief Minister Trophy went to Mian Tariq Nisar of Nisar Spinning Mills while two Best Export Performance awards were given to Muhammad Rizwan Younis of Guard Agricultural Research & Services and Alid Hassam Asghar of Ali Commercial Corporation.
8 Best Export Brand awards were given to Qasim Rehman of Kalamkaar, Amjad Wazir of Power Vision System, Tariq Mahmood of Sarwar Foods, Chaudhry Umair Javaid of Golys Enterprises, Zafar Iqbal of Nobel Foods, Malik Muhammad Omer Farooq of Omer Agro International and Muhammad Shafiq of Supreme Rice Mills.