The Pakistan Industrial and Traders Association Alliance Front (PIAF) has asked the authorities to declare export emergency in the country to further enhance exports growth.
While welcoming government pledge of economic reforms to boost exports, PIAF senior vice chairman Nasir Hameed and vice chairman Javed Siddiqi said Pakistan’s trade deficit has widened 100 percent to stand at $24.78 billion during July-Dec of this fiscal year, as compared to $12.36 billion in the corresponding half of the last fiscal year
Presently, there is only a desire to revive the economy, but an actual agenda backed by pragmatic analysis and research is missing, as the monstrous debt, and huge fiscal and current account deficits are symptoms of an ailing economy.
Nasir Hameed said that low export is a major reason for the growing trade deficit, with the prime ministers forming just committees to address the deficiency. He said that the PIAF wants the federal government to formulate separate policies for various sub-sectors of the industry in order to resolve their sector-specific issues and problems.
He said the different sub-sectors of the country’s large industry could not be treated at par because of their different and varying needs and requirements.
Hence, he said, the government and ministry should formulate separate policies for the value-added and other sub-sectors of the industry in order to facilitate improved production and export.
PIAF vice chairman hoped that the government would initiate the process of dialogue with the representatives of all the sectors of the industry to get their input for the formulation of a new policy.
He said the exporters were facing a severe problem in meeting the export orders due to multiple reasons, seeking the attention of the government on the issues of ease of doing business; cost of doing business, one window operation, and minimum interference of bureaucracy and formulation of a counsel of all stakeholders to resolve the issues of exporters.
Javed Siddiqi stressed the need for early clearance of outstanding refund cases. He urged the government to take immediate steps for clearance of outstanding refund cases to protect the industry from total collapse.
High cost of doing business, issues of market access and exchange rate are hindering the Pakistan exports growth and the government will have to work on it in consultation with the stakeholders to resolve the problems.
We are hopeful that country will progress rapidly in changed political culture and will put the country on the path of progress and prosperity, he added.
He said the PIAF wants economic progress and prosperity of the country and for this purpose, just right directions are needed to be set in consultation with the stakeholders. “We need to work together to overcome trade deficit and take steps to increase industrial and economic growth.”
He said that a number of reasons can be attributed to the increasing trade deficit, which includes structural factors and erroneous policies. Unlike the Middle East or East Asia, Pakistan has followed a traditional policy of import substitution rather than export promotion. Therefore, little emphasis has been given on broadening exports that have remained over-reliant on textiles.
Exports of cloth, cotton yarn and value-added textiles make up to almost 60 per cent of our total exports. The economic charts of Pakistan stand on an unsatisfactory level at the moment. PIAF asks the government and policymakers to encourage private sectors to play their roles in putting the economy back on the right track, he added.
Separate policies for all sub-sectors of industry must to resolve sector-specific issues