Tuesday September 21, 2021

Govt intends to increase exports up to $40b during FY 2021-22

August 03, 2021

ISLAMABAD: The government plans to increase exports of Pakistan’s made-ups ranging from $38.7 billion to $40 billion during the current financial year 2021-22 with a claim it will focus upon diversifying exports of ‘non- conventional’ sectors.

The exports of goods and services stood at $31.3 billion in the last fiscal year ended on June 30, 2021, including $25.3 billion export of goods and $6 billion of services sector. Instead of relying upon traditional five export-oriented sectors, including textile, leather, sports goods, surgical goods and carpets, the government has come up with claims that it will now focus upon diversifying both markets and products.

In order to boost up exports, the textile sector exports will fetch foreign exchange earnings of $20 to $21 billion in the current fiscal year, while remaining non-traditional sectors, such as engineering, information technology and other sectors would be focused to achieve diversification in the export-oriented sectors.

Prime Minister Imran Khan on Monday held a meeting with the leading exporters and decided to hold consultations on a monthly basis in order to give an impetus to boost up the exports. “Different kinds of distortions were created into various sectors of the national economy and it got destroyed in the last 30 to 40 years period and its ratification requires at least 20 to 25 years. Our government stabilised the economy that was standing on the brink of bankruptcy and there was none on the political front to extend any challenge. Now our focus will be towards achieving higher exports on a sustained basis,” said the prime minister’s Special Assistant on Political Communication, Shahbaz Gill along with PM’s Adviser on Commerce Abdul Razak Dawood while addressing a news conference here at the PID Centre on Monday.

When asked about the prices of sugar which were not slashed down despite the government’s claims, Shahbaz Gill replied that the prices of sugar were high in the international market as it had increased by 56 per cent in the international market. He said that collection of government’s tax on sugar doubled as it went up from Rs14 billion to Rs29 billion in the last fiscal year. He said that there was a cartel in the sugar sector but the government had decided to fight against the mafia instead of bowing down before them.

He said the government was applying common sense to boost the exports as integrity and honesty were adopted to achieve higher exports on a sustained basis. He said that Pakistan was the fifth largest motorcycle producing country after China, India, Indonesia and Vietnam and it was hoped that it would assume the fourth position the next year.

Abdul Razak Dawood said on the occasion that Pakistan’s exports of goods and services stood at $31.3 billion, including exports of goods worth $25.3 billion and exports of services worth $6 billion. He said the government took four major initiatives, including rationalising the exchange rate, payment of tax refunds, competitive energy prices and tariff rationalisation in order to remove export bias. He said the IT sector exports achieved a marvelous growth of 47 per cent and its exports crossed the $2 billion mark.

The export target of goods has been jacked up from $25.3 billion to $31.2 billion, while the export of services will be increased from $6 billion to $7.5 billion for the current fiscal year. “We have envisaged exports ranging from $38.7 billion to $40 billion”, he added.

He said that manufacturing of motorcycles stood at 2.6 million on an annual basis. The motorcycle exports, he said, would kick-start and around 10,000 motorcycles would be exported. He said that manufacturing of mobile phones would kick-start and its exports would be started in the next five years.

He said that there was a shift in the exports as high value-added sector exports increased such as exports of knitwear went up by 37 per cent, bedwear 29 per cent, readymade garments by 19 per cent and yarn went down by 2 per cent.

When asked about the rising import bill, Abdul Razak Dawood did not reply about the import target and stated that today’s meeting just focused on the exports and it was decided that the prime minister would also hold a meeting to analyse the imports trend in detail in near future. He said that they criticised the increased imports in the last five years because there was consumption-led growth but here the import of machinery and raw material went up. He said that the import of food stood at $8.4 billion, machinery $10 billion, POL products $11 billion, textile-related raw material $3.8 billion, agriculture and chemical sectors $9.3 billion in the last fiscal year.