Karachi, June 20, 2017 (PPI-OT):The Federation of Pakistan Chamber of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI) on Tuesday said strategy to boost exports through trade agreements with other countries has failed to deliver. The government has hurriedly finalised Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) and Preferential Trade Agreements (PTAs) with some countries but the exports continue to fall while imports have jumped which is contrary to the objectives, it said.
In the last one year the country has suffered revenue losses to the tune of Rs 41 billion due to trade deals while FTAs with Turkey and Thailand will increase the losses, said Atif Ikram Sheikh, Chairman FPCCI Regional Committee on Industries. The faulty trade deals have also damaged the local industry, therefore, all such pacts should be revisited and FTAs with Turkey and China must be suspended unless the private sector’s concerns are addressed, he demanded.
Atif Ikram Sheikh said that according to an estimate after FTA, for every additional dollar increase in our exports to Turkey, Turkish imports to Pakistan would increase by three dollars. In other words, exports from Pakistan to Turkey will result in 200 percent more imports into Pakistan while the imports from Thailand will increase by 300 percent.
He said that trade gap for the first eleven months has jumped to 30 billion dollars which prove that the trade deals have not served the purpose of the country but that of other nations. Exports remained stagnant, imports have increased while the local industry has paid the price for faulty deals managed by inexperienced officials, he noted. The government should take corrective measures on all the fronts otherwise gains of last three years will go down the drain, he warned.
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