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No Commerce Ministry assistance for provinces to develop export-oriented infrastructure

No Commerce Ministry assistance for provinces to develop export-oriented infrastructure

ISLAMABAD: The Ministry of Commerce does not provide any assistance to provinces for creating appropriate infrastructure for the development and growth of exports.

“However, MoC takes necessary action on any complaints or difficulties, faced by exporters within its purview” a well-placed source privy to Minister for Commerce told his scribe here the other day.

The source said that Ministry of Industries (MoI), Board of Investment (BOI) were responsible for provision of assistance to the provinces for infrastructure development through establishment of Export Processing Zones (EPZ), which functioned under Ministry of Industries and Special Economic Zones (SEZ) worked under Board of Investment.

The source said that Export Processing Zones Authority (EPZA) was established to increase and improve the exports of the country in 1980. Its main objectives were accelerating the pace of industrialization in the country and enhancing the volume of exports by creating an enabling environment for investors to initiate ambitious export-oriented projects in the Zones which would, as a corollary, create job opportunities, bring in new technology and attract foreign investment.

“Currently, Economic Processing Zones are functioning in Karachi, Risalpur, Sandak, Sialkot, Duddar, Gujranwala, Gwadar and Tuwariqu,” the source said adding, “ Special Economic Zone has been established at Khairpur and establishment of more SEZs was in pipeline”.

“MoC announced Strategic Trade Policy Framework (STPF)  that provided a Medium term road map to address challenges and improve’ export competitiveness through institutional / governance reforms, trade facilitation measures and incentives for booing up exports” the source said adding the MoC was making efforts to implement the incentives for exporters announced in the SFPF.

The source added that with an objective to provide maximum facilities to exporters MoC had taken necessary action on any complaints or difficulties, faced by exporters within its purview. “However, Provincial Governments, Ministry of Industries, BOI etc. may be able further elaborate regarding complaints falling within their purview,” the source said

“In result of hard toil taken by the incumbent Minister for Commerce textile exports to European Union (EU) increased by around 21.4 % during Jan.-Aug. 2014 as compared to Jan.-Aug. 2013” the source added saying that award f status of GSP + to Pakistan also played key role in this boost in textile exports.

The source said that the increase in textile exports to EU spoke the volume of good performance of our textile industry and sector because Indian textile exports to EU increased by around 9.3% during Jan.-Aug. 2014 as compared to Jan.-Aug. 2013 as well as Bangladeshi textile exports to EU increased by around 5.5% during Jan.-Aug. 2014 as compared to Jan.-Aug. 2013.

It is worth mentioning here that government has been focussing on infrastructure development in the country to increase local manufacturing and to uplift the domestic growth. Moreover, exporters, traders and representative bodies of other relevant segments of society had been lamenting against the insufficient infrastructure and demanding of the government to ensure the provision of required facilities to enhance exports.