Conference speakers appreciative of CPEC impact on Pakistan’s economy

Conference speakers appreciative of CPEC impact on Pakistan’s economy
Conference speakers appreciative of CPEC impact on Pakistan’s economy

KARACHI:Advisor to the Prime Minister on Commerce and Investment, Abdul Razzak Dawood on Monday expressed his satisfaction that the initiatives and projects taken under China-Pakistan Economic Corridor and the enhanced cooperation between the two governments have started yielding and significant improvement has been witnessed on economic and social fronts in Pakistan.

He was speaking at “ CPEC Industrial Cooperation—B2B Investment Conference” here; hosted by Board of Investment. It was also attended by Minister of State and Chairman Board of Investment Muhammad Azfar Ahsan, Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on CPEC Affairs, Khalid Mansoor, Secretary , Board of Investment Ms.Fareena Mazhar, Consul General of China in Karachi, Li Bijian and Sindh Chief Secretary Syed Mumtaz Hussain Shah. Besides, good number of representatives of Pakistani and Chinese companies, and officers of Sindh Board of Investment and Sindh Industries Department was present.

Abdul Razzak Dawood said that under the vision of Prime Minister Imran Khan, the government was taking every step to strengthen the regional connectivity.

He mentioned that from March 21,2022 Pakistani cargo trucks would start carrying Pakistani export goods to Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan and other Central Asian States via Afghanistan. And, this would help boost Pakistan’s exports as CARs had 72 million population with huge consumers’ market.

He made it clear that the investment through CPEC was not China centric but was open to the entire world.

He said Pakistan was now moving towards manufacturing economy from the trading economy.

“Our survival lies in focusing on exports and import substitution,” he asserted adding that last year Pakistan had record exports and hopefully this year would have more exports.

In next budget, he said, the government was going to reduce the Customs and regulatory duties , along with cutting the cost of doing business and ensuring ease of doing business. Pakistan had a narrow range of export goods and needs quick diversification of export goods complemented with search of new potential markets , especially focus on Africa.

“Chinese, please, facilitate Pakistan’s exports to Africa,” he urged.

He referred to Overseas Investors’ Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s yearly survey of business climate in Pakistan, which had appreciated the policy and administrative steps taken  by the present government, and declared the environment very conducive to business and investment. Earlier, OCCI used to show many concerns and now the same people talked of , in Pakistan things were moving in right direction, he said.

Revival and strengthening of an economy was not a few days task, but it was a long journey, he remarked.

State Minister and Chairman of Board of Investment, Muhammad Azfar Ahsan spoke of BOI’s initiatives to promote investment in the country , mainly at the Special Economic Zones under CPEC which offered many incentives. The BOI was pursuing the targets of developing bilateral investment regime and conducive business environment.  Under Prime Minister Imran Khan’s leadership, he added, the government had taken structural, policy and tax reforms.

He mentioned that during the recent visit of Prime Minister Imran Khan to China, the two countries  had signed an industrial cooperation framework agreement, which included re-location of Chinese industries to Pakistan.  Two months back, he said, Pakistan-China Business Forum had also been formed to promoted investment and bilateral trade.

Source:  Daily Times