ISLAMABAD: Projects like the Faisalabad Industrial Estate Development and Management Company (FIEDMC) would help the industry generate economic activities by attracting foreign and domestic investors, besides enhancing export volumes to tackle the challenge of trade deficit, said Adviser to Prime Minister on Commerce Abdul Razak Dawood on Tuesday.
Talking to FIEDMC Chairman Mian Kashif Ashfaq at a meeting in Lahore, the adviser pointed out that Pakistan’s exports went up by 7% as production increased despite a difficult environment. The trade gap was narrowing as exports were on a steady trajectory while imports dropped by $4 billion, and the current account deficit also improved, Dawood said.
He said the situation on the economic front was not as bad as being portrayed by some quarters and they were ready to correct things as well. However, he acknowledged that the economic situation must have improved at a much accelerated pace.
The PM adviser said in terms of quantity, the export of garments went up by 29%, cement 25%, basmati rice 21% and footwear 26% so far in the current fiscal year. He pointed out that the government provided subsidy on electricity and gas to export-oriented sectors and it would continue in the coming year.
FIEDMC chief Mian Kashif Ashfaq, while highlighting distinctive features of the Allama Iqbal Industrial City, said the project would house 400 industrial units besides giving employment to 250,000 people.
He said approximately Rs400 billion worth of foreign and local investment would be pumped into this project and development work was going on at a fast pace. The Faisalabad industrial zone has always provided state-of-the-art facilities to its customers, besides resolving their issues through one-window operations on a priority basis, he said, adding confidence of investors was being restored after the completion of M3 project.
“Prime minister has changed the image of the country within a short span of time, since he formed the government in August last year,” remarked Ashfaq. “Pakistan, which suffered huge economic losses in the last 20 years due to militancy, has now emerged as a progressive country.”
Published in The Express Tribune, June 5th, 2019.