Focus being made on SME sector

CBI experts to assist enterprises via export coaching programmes

Peer Muhammad April 26, 2016

ISLAMABAD: The Ministry of Commerce is focusing on the development and training of new exporters from the Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) sector to boost Pakistan’s exports in the coming years, said Minister of Commerce Khurram Dastgir.

While talking to a delegation of technical experts from the Centre for Promotion of Imports from Developing Countries (CBI) based in The Hague, Netherlands, he said there was a need for ‘a hand-holding’ of the prospective SME exporters and guide them to graduate to the next level.

The minister asked CBI experts to focus on assisting Pakistani enterprises in developing their products through the Export Coaching Programmes (ECPs) in industrial and consumer products, primarily in the fruits and vegetables sector, floriculture, fisheries and specific sectors of textile and light engineering, as per the GSP Plus requirements.

He also asked the delegation to lay special emphasis on export coaching, institutional development and human resource development.

CBI is working in Pakistan since 2008 and is working on its new five-year plan for the country. A team of technical experts from the Netherlands is due to visit Pakistan to seek ground-level information to provide input for the upcoming plan.

Last year, a Memorandum of Cooperation was signed between the Trade Development Authority of Pakistan (TDAP) and CBI in The Hague for the institutional building of TDAP and capacity building of other business support organisations (BSOs) in Pakistan.

CBI will also work for institutional development of other BSO active in the industrial, surgical, medical equipment and agriculture sectors.

It is currently extending its support to Pakistan Institute of Trade and Development, National Productivity Organisations, Trade Development Authority of Pakistan, Engineering Development Board, SMEDA and PAAPAM.

“Our focus is to address issues of prospective exporters at the sectoral level and build a sustainable supply chain for exporters,” said a representative of the CBI.

Published in The Express Tribune, April 27th,  2016.

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