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July 14, 2020

Corona protection gear sales reviving Pakistan’s declining exports: Dawood

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A
APP
July 14, 2020

NEW YORK: Pakistan expects exports to recover, aided by demand for Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) amid the coronavirus pandemic, Adviser to Prime Minister on Commerce and Investment Abdul Razak Dawood said.

Exports of PPE, masks and other protective gear -- a new market -- have increased, he told Bloomberg, a New York-based media outlet, by telephone. Textiles, which account for half of the nation’s export, is also seeing a pick-up in orders, the adviser said. “Pakistan has really moved fast into that area,” Dawood said, referring to PPE. The current year should be a better one than last, he said.

Pakistan’s exports dropped 7% in the year ended June, it was pointed out. However, supply chain disruptions caused by the pandemic has meant Pakistan secured its first sportswear order from Hugo Boss AG, Ijaz Akhtar Khokhar, chief coordinator at Pakistan Readymade Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association, was quoted as saying in the dispatch. Dawood said Pakistan plans to give tax incentives to any global brand that opens an office in the country.

Pakistan is looking to spur growth in the economy after its first contraction in 68 years in the year ended June. While exports dropped in seven out of the past 12 months, the rupee’s depreciation — by more than 50% since late 2017 — has made the nation’s shipments competitive globally, he said.

Dawlance, a local home appliances maker, exported microwaves to Bangladesh for the first time, while DG Khan Cement Ltd. has sent clinker to new markets such as China and Philippines.

The cement maker has another order from the Philippines for supply of 20,000 tons as well as making more shipments to China, according to CFO Inayatullah Niazi.