Islamabad, April 19, 2013 (PPI-OT): Apart from not knowing the meaning of the word SME and its definition the ex coalition government did not bother about the promotion and development of the sector and at one stage even blocked all funds for the ongoing projects and even withheld regular funds for expenses of the Small and Medium Enterprises Development Authority (SMEDA). The SME policy was not implemented which was passed in the national assembly and approved by the cabinet. It remained just a document made at a high cost of time, energy and money.
President Union of Small and Medium Enterprises (UNISAME) Zulfikar Thaver invited the attention of Marium Chaudhry the chief executive office (CEO) of Mass Human Resource Services (MHRS) and co-sponsor of the 1st Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) conference scheduled to be held at a local hotel on 20th April 2013 to question the panel of politicians about the work done by them for SME promotion and development when in power. The sector deserves an explanation from the ex government.
He said it is regretted that the government indulged in lavish expenses at the cost of the exchequer and deprived the sector of promotion and development work.
Despite being told repeatedly at SME conferences and workshops about the requirements of the sector mainly land at concession on easy payment terms, finance at affordable mark up under pay as you earn schemes, technological help and support to import technology, logistics and marketing support, the government did not examine the issues seriously. No noteworthy incentives or relief was given to new entrants and the setting up of innovative industries.
The union had submitted proposals to the government to build industrial estates, set up export credit guarantee and insurance to make the banks comfortable in financing the SMEs but lamented that nothing was done to make life better for the MSMEs. The various schemes of the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) fell flat as the banks were interested in parking their money with the government rather than finance the SMEs
The sector has been facing high handedness of officials on the one hand and on the other the terrible law and order situation, power crisis, corruption and compulsory payment of speed money for genuine work. The SMEs cannot visit their own factories in some areas due to kidnapping, extortion and many cases have been reported of cargo being stolen on way to the docks and raw material coming from the interior looted before reaching destination.
The union has urged Marium Chaudhry to highlight the basic requirements of the MSMEs at the conference and propagate the fact that SME promotion and development is the key factor in the development of the economy and Pakistan has to learn this fact from several countries of the world who have sharpened their tools for SME promotion. In Pakistan SME sector is the majority sector, the backbone and the back forte of the large industries. The SMEs are involved in farming, trading, services and manufacturing and Pakistan’s economy cannot progress without the growth and promotion of its MSMEs.
The union pointed out that technology is the first and without technological help the SME sector will remain behind. The SME farmers need to be educated for modern farming. High cost of finance is increasing cost of production and making Pakistan uncompetitive.
The union has requested the sponsors to pass a resolution at the conclusion of the workshop and submit the declaration to the caretaker prime minister for ready reference
For more information, Contact:
Union of Small and Medium Enterprises (UNISAME)
75/1 3rd Commercial Street,
Phase IV, D.H.A., Karachi, Pakistan
Phones: + 92 35884225 and 6
Cell: + 92 300 8245307 and + 92 321 8245307
Fax: + 92 35380642