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Stakeholders’ delegation to meet with Prime Minister

Karachi: The meeting of a high powered delegation of stakeholders led by S M Muneer would be arranged with Prime Minister, Yousuf Raza Gilani for release of stuck up refund claims and further consultations for promotion of exports, this was announced by the Chief Executive of Trade Development Authority of Pakistan (TDAP), Tariq Iqbal Puri.

Speaking as chief guest at a luncheon meeting at Korangi Association of Trade and Industry (KATI), the TDAP chief said that the delegation of stakeholders would be also comprise minister of commerce, secretary commerce and himself (Tariq Puri).

He said that so far an amount of Rs3.7 billion has been disbursed among the exporters against refund claims and he would try his best for release of the rest of the claims. He said that future meetings of Export Development Fund (EDF) would be held in consultations with the stakeholders as well. TDAP has also announced that the year 2012 would be the focus year on “Regional Trade and Export Promotion”.

He informed that the issue of EU Economic Package would be resolved soon as meetings with the opposing countries have been held already and their reservations about the package have been removed and a positive result is expected in February this year. Puri said that Preferential Tariff Agreement (PTA) with Indonesia is being signed later this month following which Pakistan would be able to have a cushion of 10 per cent in import of edible oil reducing the import bill on palm oil.

Puri said that women Expo is being organised in UAE this year in order to give international exposure to the women entrepreneurs. TDAP Chief urged upon the exporters to book stalls for Expo Pakistan scheduled to be held from October 4-7, 2012 at Karachi Expo Centre as soon as possible as the late entries may not be able to get space due to rush.

Puri clarified that MFN status to India is yet to become effective and final decision would only be made after the consultations with the trade sectors concerned. He said that a full-fledged delegation is from India is scheduled to arrive in February for follow-up meeting in this regard. He said that like Spain Japan, South Korea and China are also being focused for trade promotion and exchange of delegations are being arranged.

He said that as a result of sponsoring a delegation from El Cortez Ingles – one of the largest hyper markets to Pakistan and hold talks with manufacturers, the exporters are able to export goods worth millions of dollars.

He said that similar efforts would remain continued to invite big stores’ chains and hyper markets from Japan, France, Korea, etc. to get more business for local manufacturers. He said that due to economic slow-down particularly crisis in EU has resulted adversely on exports worldwide including Pakistan.

He said that India has to devalue its currency by 25 per cent due to the fact. He however said that non-traditional items have shown encouraging results by increasing exports by 25 per cent during first five months of current fiscal year.

The Patron In-Chief KATI and President Pak-India Chamber of Commerce and Industry, S M Muneer said that if the government resolves power and gas crisis on war footing basis, the exporters would bring exports to over $30 billion next year.

He said that the situation has become extremely worrisome as factories are being shut down due to power and gas crisis. He warned that Faisalabad’s industry has become dead and the industrialists are sitting on the road due to the situation. He further warned that if the gas crisis would not be resolved the situation would be worsened.

He said that unabated smuggling of livestock is also making a crippling affect on leather sector’s exports. He demanded of the government to immediately stop smuggling of livestock to Afghanistan and Iran. He suggested the CE TDAP to hold meetings of EDF after the consultations with stakeholders. He appreciated the efforts of Tariq Puri for resolving the exporters’ issues.

The Chairman, KATI, Ehtishamuddin requested the TDAP chief to support a trade delegation of plastic sector proceeding to India for market access. He said that commercial counsellors and trade commissioners should be made accountable for any export drop and non-cooperation with the visiting delegations. He urged upon the TDAP to give preference to promotion of non-traditional items’ exports.

He said that energy crisis is resulting in industries’ closure and non-performing loans are increasing to uncontrollable level. The Chairman KATI’s Standing Committee on Exports, Danish Khan suggested to evolve an export policy for at least 5 to 10 years. He suggested sending more delegations to Far Eastern countries, Africa and Central Asia to explore new markets.

For more information, contact:
Trade Development Authority of Pakistan
5th Floor, Block A, Finance and Trade Centre, Shahrah-e-Faisal,
Karachi 75200
Pakistan.
PABX: 92-21- 9206487-90
UAN: 92-21-111-444-111
Email: tdap@tdap.gov.pk
Website: www.tdap.gov.pk

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