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GSP Plus status to increase textile exports by $1b

LAHORE: Duty-free access to the European markets under Generalized Scheme of Preferences (GSP) Plus status to Pakistan will help attract additional $1 billion by exporting different textile products during next year. Besides, ample opportunities exist to further boost local exports to EU by diversifying the industrial sector, said Spokesman of Ministry of Textile Industry, Kanwar Usman.
He said that Pakistan can earn additional $ 2-3 billion per year by concentrating its other textile products including T-shirts, cotton under garments, man-made fiber jercy, cotton women shirts and overcoats.
He said that Ministry of Textile Industry was also trying to diversify the industrial sector to get maximum benefit from the scheme by introducing other textile products besides general products.
The spokesman further said that a large portion of domestic exports consist of textile and textile products adding that about US$ 3.1 billion were added in forex reserves by textile exports during last year.
He said that tariff lines covered under GSP plus are almost 6,000 which is 91% of total tariff lines. It is expected that Pakistan will be allowed to get benefit on almost 2,500 tariff lines out of which around 900 belong to the textile sector.
The government was fully determined to take maximum advantage of the scheme and has convened a meeting of all the stakeholders to resolve the issues and challenges being faced by the industry.
He said that the meeting would be held on December 18 with sectaries of Commerce and Textile Industry in chair, while representatives from textile and clothing sector will attend the meeting.
The GSP Plus status will allow almost 20 per cent of Pakistani exports to enter the EU market at zero tariff and 70 per cent at preferential rates for four years till 2017.
It may be recalled that under the scheme, country can export most of its textile products to 27 EU nations at concessionary duty rates or absolutely  duty free, making Pakistani products cheaper for European importers.

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