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Media Briefing: Doing Business Reforms Pakistan

Prime Minister’s Office 
Board of Investment 
Doing Business Reforms Pakistan
Media Brief:
Advisor to Prime Minister on Commerce, Textile, Industry & Production and Investment, Mr. Abdul Razak Dawood, and Chairman Board of Investment, Mr. Haroon Sharif highlighted that Pakistan is aggressively pursuing reforms to create ease of doing business in the country. The country had improved its ranking by 11 points and moved from to 136/190 from 147/190 in Doing Business Report 2019. Since the launch of DB report in 2002, it was the first time that Pakistan jumped 11 points in one year. Mr. Dawood told that the task is to ensure Pakistan carries on with the improvement trend. Mr. Dawood appreciated World Bank for continued assistance and appreciated the efforts of all federal and provincial government departments.
Mr. Abdul Razak Dawood and Mr. Haroon Sharif shared with Media following specific reforms undertaken by the Federal Government and Punjab and Sindh Governments:
  • Integration of SECP with Punjab and Sindh business registration portal. This has helped in reducing the time and process for registering a company and providing one platform where businesses are started. The company can now be registered in one day with the Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan on its online platform.
  • In Lahore, the Lahore Development Authority has started its one window operation where all departments involved in the process of issuing a construction permit are present. Similarly, in Karachi a one-window solution is in its development phase. Government of Sindh will be launching it soon. After the introduction of one window the process has been made efficient from 8 months to 2 months in Lahore and expected to be reduced to 3 months in Karachi.
  • Complete automation of property registration in Punjab. Property registration through online mode has reduced the time drastically for this process and is one of the key areas of reforms. It improves transparency and quality of land administration.
  • Online payment of federal and provincial taxes, contributions and duties – As a result of this effort, the number of tax payment even if they are 12, would be considered as one since now there is one online interaction. Online payments will help Pakistan to improve its ranking in paying taxes indicator.
  • Integration of key departments with WeBOC (online Platform of Pakistan Customs). To help importers/exporters and reduce the time and cost of compliance with departments, key departments have been integrated in WeBOC (Web Based One Customs Platform). 
  • Automation of electricity connection process by K electric. K-Electric has made the process of getting a commercial electricity connection easier by making it online where the customer can track the application as well. 
  • Establishment of Collateral registry has also been started for unincorporated entities and registry has become operational with the appointment of registrar. This will help the small businesses to use their moveable assets as collateral for getting credit. 
  • Dedicated EoDB offices have been set up at federal and provincial level for the purpose of removing bottlenecks and facilitating investors in the smooth business operations.
  • Mr. Haroon Sharif explained that it is a priority of the Government to make business entry and operations easier, faster and cheaper. He added that the next step is to cut out the redundant regulations and remove unnecessary permissions/NOCs and inspections. Mr. Razzak Dawood stressed that further improvement will take nothing less than a “whole of government approach”, in which all ministries and departments would have to follow the reforms process. 
Mr. Haroon Sharif reiterated that the Board of Investment, as the secretariat of PM’s Steering Committee on Doing Business Reforms, is keen to improve the business climate.