Pakistan taps global jute markets

Removal of additional customs duty makes jute industry cost-competitive

Our Correspondent July 23, 2020


Pakistan has started export of jute products to several countries and has tapped markets of Egypt, Iraq, Malaysia, Turkey, Italy, Australia and New Zealand, said Adviser to Prime Minister on Commerce and Investment Abdul Razak Dawood.

He announced this at a strategic meeting held to review the implementation of plans under the trade policy and other initiatives of the commerce ministry to promote geographical and product diversification for enhancing exports from Pakistan.

Dawood said the Ministry of Commerce had a firm belief that reduction in duties on raw material would lessen the anti-export bias and enhance exports. He stressed that the export of jute products from Pakistan was a good example that the country could still compete, through the import of raw jute, with countries like India and Bangladesh, which produced jute in abundance.

Underlining the efforts for diversification, the adviser stated that the export of jute products was a key element in the product diversification policy. He noted that the geographical diversification policy was also showing signs of success as Pakistan’s jute products had found new global markets.

It was pointed out in the meeting that the duty on import of raw jute had been brought down to zero in the budget for FY20. Moreover, the removal of additional customs duty in the FY21 budget has made Pakistan’s jute industry more cost-competitive.

“As a result, more orders are being received from the international market and we are looking at an unprecedented rise in the growth of jute manufacturing industry,” he remarked. It was highlighted that the export of jute products went up 148% in terms of weight, fetching more than double the foreign exchange in 2019-20 as compared to 2018-19.

Dawood noted that despite exports being small, they were still important and the numbers would improve.

Published in The Express Tribune, July 23rd, 2020.

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