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Union of Small and Medium Enterprises urges Minister of Commerce to facilitate exports to Iran, third world and non traditional markets with insurance and logistics

Karachi, August 21, 2016 (PPI-OT): The Union of Small and Medium Enterprises (UNISAME) invited the attention of the Federal Commerce Minister Khurram Dastagir to the setback to the SME sector due to decline in exports and the lack of facilities for export to Iran and third world countries.

UNISAME experts reiterated that to increase exports it is very essential that exports to Iran, third world countries and non traditional markets are facilitated with finance, insurance and logistics. President UNISAME Zulfikar Thaver said the SME exporters are unable to export to Iran which is the biggest buyer of rice and commodities from Pakistan due to absence of banking facilities for transaction with Iran.

The commercial banks are not accepting the documents for discounting bills drawn on Iranian buyers as they have not been able to appoint their correspondents in Iran for advising the letter of credits and negotiating the bills. Secondly he also pointed out that SME exporters are not financed against bills drawn on buyers of third world countries and banks of low rating due to lack of export credit guarantee insurance facility at reasonable premium.

Thaver urged Menin Rodrigues, the convener of the 10th SME Forum to be held on 23rd August 2016 to invite Azmat Ali Ranjha, the federal secretary commerce to the SME Forum to enable the participants place their major issues before the secretary. UNISAME delegates have decided to highlight the financial issues to invite the attention of the governor of State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) about the financial impediments and seek the help of the central bank for the required enabling facilities.

It is pertinent to note that under the National Financial Inclusion Strategy (NFIS) under the shared leadership of SBP, World Bank and Ministry of Finance, the major issues of the SME sector are under consideration for fast track uplift of the sector and the sector will benefit from the implementation of the action plan.

The NFIS has not only envisaged the capacity building of the SMEs but also the commercial banks and the trade associations. The action plan has agenda for alternate energy, land at concession, specific SME financing, low premium insurance, collateral management coupled with logistics and technical support for modernization. UNISAME appreciated the steps taken for Geographical Indication (GI) Protection of Basmati rice and other GI products and said this protection coupled with financial facilities will go a long way in the exports.

For more information, contact:
Union of Small and Medium Enterprises (UNISAME)
75/1 3rd Commercial Street,
Phase IV, D.H.A., Karachi, Pakistan
Tel: +92-21-35884225-6
Fax: +92-21-35380642
Cell: +92-300-8245307, +92-321-8245307
Email: unisame@gmail.com

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