Lahore, October 15, 2012 (PPI-OT): Pakistan’s trade with European countries under in EU Autonomous Trade Preference scheme will start from November 1, 2012 and an EU Notification to this regard is expected by 28th of this month.
This was stated by Head of WTO Cell of TDAP Mujeeb Ahmed Khan while speaking at a seminar on ‘Implementation of EU Autonomous Trade Preference Scheme’ jointly organized by Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry and Trade Development Authority of Pakistan (TDAP). The LCCI President Farooq Iftikhar presented Address of Welcome while Vice President Mian Abuzar Shad also spoke on the occasion.
Mujeeb Ahmed Khan said that the Trade Development Authority of Pakistan (TDAP) was all set to issue online Certificates from November 1 to the potential businessmen interested in doing business with European Union under EU Autonomous Trade Preference (ATP) scheme.
He, however, made it clear that for the remaining two months of the year(from November 1 to December 31) only 25 per cent the annual quota would be made available for duty-free access while it would be hundred per cent from January 1. 2013.
Mujeeb Khan informed the participants that all chambers of commerce in the country would be issued guidelines for issuance of country-origin certificates within a week. He said that the businessmen doing business under EU Autonomous Trade Preference scheme would have to mention the particulars of their buyers in European Union.
He said that it was a big success that Pakistan got this opportunity despite opposition by Portugal, Greece and Spain that are not only Pakistan’s competitors in Europe but also members of the EU.
The Head of WTO Cell of TDAP said that the quota management would be done entirely by the European Commission. The basic role of Pakistani authorities related to confirming that the exported products were of Pakistani origin so that they could qualify for ATP concessions.
Speaking on the occasion, the LCCI President Farooq Iftikhar said that the TDAP initiative was very crucial to set the priority right and to get business community ready to fully exploit the benefits GSP Plus status being granted to Pakistan in January 2014.
The LCCI President said that EU Autonomous Trade Preference scheme would certainly allow the businessmen to reach out to new buyers as well therefore the private sector must prove that Pakistan is fully capable of producing quality goods as per international standards.
Farooq Iftikhar, however, urged the TDAP to take on board the private sector representative bodies like chambers of commerce while finalizing any scheme or agreement on trade. He said that the Engineering products should also be made part of this scheme as Pakistan has expertise in it and presently exporting tractors and tractor spare-parts to many European countries.
The LCCI President said that Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry would extend full support to all Trade Development Authority initiatives aimed at facilitating the exporters. He said that the businesses could never become more agile and fast in delivering products and services without having a well tailored strategy and market intelligence.
The LCCI President said that there was a need for businesses to optimise their operations by deploying right infrastructure.
The LCCI Vice President Mian Abuzar Shad said that the government would have to spend all its energies to enhance export volume. It would have to invest in innovation, education, and infrastructure for achieving a prosperous future. He said that a strategy is need of the hour to promote country’s economic growth and prepare it for the challenges.
The LCCI Vice President said that Pakistani businesses, manufacturers, and service providers are among the most competitive in the world. Every company, factory, and partnership need to be thinking about exporting their goods and services to new international markets. Similarly, the Federal Government must constantly look for ways to promote exports, enforce trade agreements, and work to ensure that businesses are able to compete on the world stage, consistent with global trading rules.
For more information, contact:
Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI)
Lahore -54000, Pakistan
Tel: +9242 111 222 499
Fax: +92 42 636 8854