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News Clips 27 February, 2015

[ $50 billion target: Prime Minister asks exporters to double up efforts ]
[ Expo Pakistan: foreign trade delegates evince keen interest in textile & jewellery ]
[ Changes in SECP rules proposed ]

JANG, February 27, 2015
   [ top ]

$50 billion target: Prime Minister asks exporters to double up efforts   [ top ]

Business Recorder, February 27, 2015
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif Thursday said his government is committed to making Pakistan the preferred destination for business. Addressing the launch of Expo Pakistan, country's biggest trade fair that showcases the largest collection of Pakistan's export merchandise and services, he said that Pakistan is a land of business opportunities.

"We offer our foreign buyers a very competitive sourcing option. The captains of our industry have carved out their niche in the world market due to their production efficiencies and business ethics," he said. The Prime Minister said his government is dedicated and committed to economic development of Pakistan.

"My team and I are actively engaged to bring in long-term reforms in socio-economic sectors of Pakistan. We are well aware of the aspirations of the people of Pakistan and will do our utmost to vindicate the trust reposed in us," the Prime Minister said. He said owing to consistent efforts, his government has succeeded in enhancing Pakistan's exports to its highest ever turnover of over US $25 billion during the fiscal year 2013-14.

"I am sure our entrepreneurs will maintain and further accelerate this growth momentum to achieve the export level of US $50 billion within three years," the Prime Minister said. The Prime Minister said the government recently approved its Textile Policy, which is aimed at doubling the exports of textiles and clothing sector from existing US $13 billion to US $26 billion by the year 2019.

He said that Asia is gradually emerging as the new global economic hub and Pakistan is fortunate to be located in the high economic growth neighbourhood. He said that Pakistan is currently not part of this highly competitive economic growth activity but has a strong resolve to achieve a similar target. The Prime Minister particularly highlighted the performance of Pakistani textile and apparel industry and said it is considered amongst the world's leaders. The bedsheets, quilt covers, T-shirts and jeans produced in Pakistan are sold at international leading chain stores from discounters to upscale outlets and under leading brand names.

Prime Minister said that Pakistan has modern rice milling and processing industry and its exotic Basmati rice has made its mark in the world market. All these production advantages offer "unlimited business opportunities" that has been aptly chosen as the slogan of Expo Pakistan. He said as an incentive to adding profitability to business ventures, Pakistan has effectively negotiated the bilateral, multilateral and pluri-lateral trading arrangements with many regions and countries in the world enabling its products to enter the foreign markets at lower tariffs.

In this regard he mentioned the South Asian Free Trade Agreement (SAFTA) that is in operation and aimed at liberalising trade with its South Asian neighbours. He said bilateral free trade agreements with China, Sri Lanka and Malaysia already exist. "We have also entered into Preferential Trading Arrangements with Iran, Mauritius, Indonesia and similar arrangements with D-8 countries have been finalised.

"I would specially mention here the opportunity of zero rated market access to our biggest export market of European Union under GSP Plus scheme," the Prime Minister told the investors. He said his government was committed to devising a consistent policy direction for its trade and industry. "We have announced a three-year Strategic Trade Policy Framework providing a long-term policy framework for consistency and predictability for businesses and to be able to plan and strategize expansion and growth.

"I have emphatically directed the concerned government agencies to simplify procedures, reduce red tape, and enhance transparency and efficiency creating a business-friendly environment," he said. He said he is very mindful of the challenges confronting country's industry and export sectors. He said the energy crisis has adversely affected national industry in meeting delivery commitments with foreign buyers.

"Our government has made the solution of this problem as its first priority and we have considerably improved the energy supply situation. "We are continuously working on further improving the situation and hope to overcome the problem in not-so-distant a future. This must provide an added comfort level to our foreign collaborators while dealing with Pakistani suppliers," he said.

The Prime Minister said in the current highly competitive economic environment, no country can afford to be complacent in terms of retaining its international market share particularly of its most competitive products. "I exhort exporters to double the efforts in the coming years for further enhancing exports of Pakistan," he said and added that he has also instructed the Ministry of Commerce and Trade Development Authority of Pakistan to extend maximum possible support to them, as his government considers it a national priority.

The Prime Minister also encouraged exhibitors to try and build long-term business relations with their customers to establish MADE IN PAKISTAN as a reliable and recognisable brand the world over. He also noted that the TDAP (Trade Development Authority, Pakistan) was taking the EXPO abroad and will be organising 'Aalishan Pakistan' in London. "I am sure it will be great success," he said. He later handed over trophies amongst outstanding exporters.

Expo Pakistan: foreign trade delegates evince keen interest in textile & jewellery   [ top ]

Business Recorder, February 27, 2015
Textile and jewellery products attracted the foreign business delegates at the 9th Expo Pakistan 2015 which was inaugurated by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif here on Thursday. Though as many as 350 local companies are showcasing their products in the country's mega event, foreign businessmen of around 70 countries were seen thronging the pavilions of textile, handicraft and jewellery products on the first day of the of the four- day event.

"We did very handsome business of jewellery and handicraft products in early hours of the fair as the foreign visitors evinced keen interest in handicraft items," said Bisma Sahir, who is curriculum development expert at the EU-funded Technology Up-gradation and Skill Development Company (TSDC) for empowerment of women. "In fact, customers' response has encouraged us to bring more variety of different products and we are expecting more orders in next three days," she added.

Foreign delegates belonging to Malaysia, Indonesia, Hong Kong, Poland, Brazil, Bangladesh, Argentina, United Arab Emirates (UAE), Vietnam, Tunisia, the United States of America, United Kingdom, South Africa, are participating in the fair. A businessman from England, Jhon, told Business Recorder that he has come to Pakistan after seven years to purchase some textile products. "I am looking for some good quality towels and a deal is underway with the manufactures," he said.

"Pakistan is one of the top countries in the world that produce good quality textile products," Faizan, a Tunisian businesswoman, remarked, saying that she was impressed by the hospitality of Karachiites. LE Kim Hung, a trader from Vietnam's food industry, said that he was participating in the fair along with 20 other traders from his country on the invitation of Pakistan Embassy. "We are looking for enhancing bilateral trade between the two countries," he added. A trader from local horticulture sector, who has set up four stalls in the fair, said that though the TDAP is organising exhibitions in order to attract foreigners, it should also work for research and development sector. One of the salient features of the event was B to B meetings between local and foreign traders.

Changes in SECP rules proposed   [ top ]

The News, February 20, 2015
ISLAMABAD: The Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) has proposed certain amendments in the Single Member Companies (SMC) Rules, 2003.

The requirements of nominee and alternate nominee directors as well as particulars and documents of the legal heirs of the single member have been proposed to be deleted from the SMC rules, a statement said on Thursday.

The SECP introduced the concept of SMC in 2002. The detailed framework for registration of ‘Single Member Companies’ was provided vide Single Member Companies Rules, 2003.

These rules allow single persons/businessmen to convert their non-corporate entities into companies with limited liability of the members and enable them to deal with public entities as companies rather than individuals.

However, it was observed that the concept of the SMC could not flourish as per expectations because of cumbersome pre-incorporation procedures.

At present, SMCs have to provide particulars and documents pertaining to the legal heirs as well as details of nominee and alternate nominee directors along with their consents.

These requirements were considered hurdle in promoting the SMCs and therefore, have been proposed to be abolished in the amended Rules. In the amended rules, a provision regarding incorporation of SMC by corporate legal person has been added.

Additionally, in case of death of single member, the role of secretary has been strengthened. A provision has also been added regarding penalty in case of violation of SMC rules.

It is envisaged that the amended rules shall provide a hassle free regulatory mechanism and shall help flourish growth of SMCs.

The draft notification for amendments in the SMC Rules has been published in Official Gazette and also placed at the SECP web site to elicit public opinion.