Experts at a roundtable conference called for an operational strategy to implement the forthcoming trade policy.
The roundtable titled, ‘public-private policy symposium for achieving export competitiveness in Pakistan’, was organised by the Sustainable Development Policy Institute (SDPI) in collaboration with the World Bank.
Speaking on the occasion, World Bank economist Enrique Blanco Armas said that trade through employment generation can propel the country towards a sustainable path of economic growth and development.
He said a poor business environment with an overvalued exchange rate, relatively weak trade facilitation and infrastructure and absence of value chains from the trade policy have resulted in a decline in Pakistan’s exports by 20% during the fiscal year 2011-17.
“Pakistan’s export performance in the past 10 years has not been stellar,” Armas said, adding that exports in goods and services rose by just 27.3% in Pakistan, whereas exports on average during the same period grew by 165% in India, 276% in Bangladesh and 445% in Vietnam over the period of 2005-16. Pakistan can strengthen implementation mechanisms of its rules and regulations through the introduction of Prime Ministerial and Presidential delivery units, who are tasked with monitoring micro-level targets, he added.
SDPI Joint Executive Director Dr Vaqar Ahmed said the trade policy framework needed urgent recalibration in order to mitigate heterogeneous issues faced by exporters due to differences across provinces.
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