GSP Plus: EU grants duty-free market access to Pakistani goods

Published: December 12, 2013
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Shandong Ruyi Technology Group has formally expressed its intention to acquire up to 31.2 million ordinary shares of Masood Textile Mills through AKD Securities. PHOTO: AFP/FILE

Shandong Ruyi Technology Group has formally expressed its intention to acquire up to 31.2 million ordinary shares of Masood Textile Mills through AKD Securities. PHOTO: AFP/FILE

Pakistan on Thursday secured the long awaited duty-free access to European markets, through the EU Generalised System of Preferences (GSP) Plus status, Radio Pakistan reported.

European Parliament approved the Single Delegated Act under which ten countries including Pakistan are entitled to Generalised System of Preferences Plus (GSP Plus) Scheme. The Act will come into force from January, 1, 2014.

Reacting to the news Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said that the GSP Plus status for Pakistan shows confidence of the international markets in the quality of its products.

Nawaz added that access to European markets was the government’s top most priority as part of the economic development agenda. The status would enable Pakistan to export more than one billion US dollars worth of products to the international markets.

As a result of the GSP Plus, the textile industry alone is expected to earn profits up to one trillion rupees per year.

Nawaz said the increase in exports will resultantly facilitate in economic growth and help in generation of millions of additional employment.

The ministry of foreign affairs in a release expressed gratitude to the countries who supported Pakistan’s inclusion under the scheme.

“We are grateful to the European Commission and member countries of the European Union for their unstinting support at every step of the process and to the European Parliament for the adoption of the Single Delegated Act.”

Pakistan hoped that the EU initiative to grant GSP Plus will supplement the government’s efforts to revive economy, with the expectation that the implementation of the Single Delegated Act, Pakistan’s trade with EU will receive a substantial boost, particularly in the textile sector.

“It will also help generate a lot of economic activity, create more employment opportunities and improve security situation in Pakistan.”

The award follows a November vote in European Union Parliament’s International Trade Committee, 17-12-1 in favour of Pakistan’s inclusion.

The GSP Plus is granted to those countries that ratify and implement international conventions relating to human and labour rights, environment and good governance. The EU has been closely watching Pakistan’s human rights record and also fiercely opposes the death penalty.

Exporters from various industries in Pakistan including textile had been anxiously hoping for access to European markets, which promises huge potential for multiplying the country’s current exports.

Dar hails GSP Plus status

Finance Minister Ishaq Dar hailed the award of GSP Plus status to Pakistan by the European Parliament on Thursday and said that the move will help increase the country’s exports by at least US $2 billion, Radio Pakistan reported.

Addressing the Sustainable Development Policy Institute’s annual Sustainable Development Conference in Islamabad today [Thursday]‚ he noted that a number of measures have been taken to fix the economy and the trust of international community on Pakistan is beginning to take root.

The Finance Minister said that even while austerity measures are being taken to bring down the deficit‚ the government has increased allocations for social safety nets to protect the poor.

Correction: In an earlier version of the story, the word “System” was mistakenly written as “Scheme” in the first paragraph. The error has been rectified.

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Reader Comments (33)

  • Naveed Alam Khattak
    Dec 12, 2013 - 6:34PM

    Excellent Opportunity>>>>> What about Power Shortage????? This is a big question….. We are getting power for only one hour after three hours off.

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  • Safwan
    Dec 12, 2013 - 6:39PM

    “As a result of the GSP Plus, the textile industry alone is expected to earn profits up to one trillion rupees per year.” That means 10 billion dollar of additional profits for our companies. Not bad, not bad at all.

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  • Jibran
    Dec 12, 2013 - 6:50PM

    Please make and ship quality products now. Don’t cheat the Europeans during these 4 years as a one off opportunity.

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  • wow
    Dec 12, 2013 - 6:58PM

    Things look good.. nation will rise inshallah

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  • azmat khan
    Dec 12, 2013 - 7:00PM

    Hopeful news.Best of luck.But remember we can not afford the displeasure or dissatisfaction of the countries with us.We need their support.

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  • Sami
    Dec 12, 2013 - 7:01PM

    At the cost of the death penelty ?Recommend

  • faysal
    Dec 12, 2013 - 7:09PM

    Best news this year.it will be Such a boost for the pak economy..it was badly needed at this stage…

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  • Fareed
    Dec 12, 2013 - 7:22PM

    Ok, no fun here, question: did the new N League govt do something for this to happen or was that already in the planning?

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  • Ch. Allah Daad
    Dec 12, 2013 - 7:36PM

    Great opportunity for our exporters and industrialists. Government has done it’s job, now it’s upto us to avail it.

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  • Uzma
    Dec 12, 2013 - 7:44PM

    PTI and JI are busy blocking NATO supply routes and EU grants duty-free market access to Pakistani goods, LOL. Well done PTI and JI. Keep on blocking NATO supply routes till US stops drone attacks. Bring down the Master to his knees.

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  • unbelievable
    Dec 12, 2013 - 8:06PM

    How much profit you generate by this is debatable – remember your largest competitors got the same deal and if anyone drops their price (which is likely) then everyone will have to follow suit.

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  • Abid
    Dec 12, 2013 - 8:23PM

    Now PMLN haters will again give their critical view but we all need to welcome this decision and this can definitely bring our economy back in few years time.

    All the best!!Recommend

  • Zen
    Dec 12, 2013 - 8:35PM

    India and Bangladesh had to issue a NOC to EU before Pakistan could get GSP+. Both these countries did issue NOC to EU. Now will the so call “big hearts” at least thank these two countries.

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  • Zen
    Dec 12, 2013 - 8:40PM

    India and Bangladesh had to issue a NOC to EU before Pakistan could get GSP+. Both these countries did issue NOC to EU. Now will the so call “big hearts” at least thank these two countries.Recommend

  • Xnain
    Dec 12, 2013 - 9:07PM

    @Naveed Alam Khattak:
    Then probably you should pay your bills on time cuz the bulk of loadshedding is being transferred to feeders where collection is miserably low.

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  • Asad Khan
    Dec 12, 2013 - 9:25PM

    Its Odd, isn’t it?

    The Euro-Zone is in recession and it is going severe in coming years, the consumer of EU think twice before spending and while WE are jumping up & down for GSP status.

    Pak should seriously look towards S.East / East and South America for new avenues.

    I hope we can get the maximum out of it though.

    remember the future is Asia.

    regards,

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  • Alann
    Dec 12, 2013 - 9:35PM

    India gave a No-Objection Certificate to EU which cleared a hurdle for Pakistan to be given the GSP+ package. While this move will help give a slight boost to Pakistan’s economy, it had a direct impact on Indian exports to EU of these very same products, resulting in losses of close to a US $100 million per year to India. Forget the MFN status which the Pakistani establishment had promised while requesting India to remove its (any) objections so as to let Pakistan get GSP+ package from EU, Pakistan did not just stood by its given word, instead it even objected to India’s entry to UNSC. All us Indians know how much reality there is in this so-called “extra mile for peace” initiative of Nawaz Sharif towards India. Ever since he has come in power, violence in Kashmir has substantially increased, besides all the controversies he has been creating against India on his so many world tours since he came to power this year.
    Oh well, Pakistan has been granted a GSP+ package for next 4 years. I hope the politicians spend this money wisely for the development of Pakistan and not for producing few more nuclear bombs to blackmail the world. This was again one of the friendly gestures by India towards Pakistan, inspite of all the troubles Pakistan gives to India every once in a while. Atleast make good use of this economic opportunity & not for militant activities against India, else Pakistan can forget ever getting the GSP+ package again after 4 years from now.

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  • Hedgefunder
    Dec 12, 2013 - 9:38PM

    @Zen:
    Forget thanking these countries for NOC, They are not even grateful to a Nation who has bankrolled them for decade with Aid for their basic economical survival !!!
    First they have to have Electricity before they start day dreaming about their production or sales !

    Recommend

  • Shahid Kinnare
    Dec 12, 2013 - 9:40PM

    Last Government work present work Government to get benefit.

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  • Arsalan Mustafa
    Dec 12, 2013 - 9:41PM

    At least we must give credit to ex-President Asif Ali Zardari and his team in the last tenure which helped in acquiring this status. No efforts of PM Nawaz in this process as news also mention the fact “The award follows a November vote in European Union Parliament’s International Trade Committee, 17-12-1 in favour of Pakistan’s inclusion.” Good things did happen in the last teneure, yet the irony of the fact is no one is ready to acknowledge.

    NOTE: With this comment do not count me a supporter of “PPPP”Recommend

  • Aalia
    Dec 12, 2013 - 10:26PM

    No gas for industry. Lols to EU ;)

    Recommend

  • Muslim Leaguer
    Dec 12, 2013 - 10:33PM

    This is indeed a great news for Pakistan!
    The allowance of GSP Plus Status to Pakistan by the EU gives access to enhance textile exports to Europe by more than US$ 2000 Million (PKR 220 Billion) generating more than 30,000 employment opportunities and bringing precious foreign exchange in Pakistan.
    The favorable vote follows Governor Punjab Chaudhry Muhammad Sarwar’s address to the EU Parliament in October 2013. Ch Sarwar has set another great example of surrendering his BritishNationality to join Pakistan Government.
    Good Governance by the PMLN has led to improvement in Pakistan’s rating by Transparency International and the economy is put on track after 14 years of loot by the Dictator and his NRO-beneficiary (Rental Power Scam, LNG Scam, Railways Corruption, Steel Mills Scandal etc etc).
    The pseudo-intellectual trolls of PTI will continue to burn in jealousy while Pakistan takes giant leaps ahead towards creation of income & employment opportunities in the country.
    Long Live Pakistan!

    Recommend

  • A2Z
    Dec 12, 2013 - 11:34PM

    @Fareed, this whole process was initiated under last govt not the current one. PML-N should not take the credit.

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  • PTIman
    Dec 12, 2013 - 11:52PM

    Even though i am not a PML supporter, I thank Nawaz Sharif from the bottom of my heart for this great achievement which is great news for the nation and youth !!!!
    Finally we wake up after 5 years+ of sleep, makes me despise PPP’s tenure!

    Recommend

  • ahsan
    Dec 13, 2013 - 12:01AM

    That’s a very good news but the thing is we are out of power right now and we are already not meeting the demand of international customers due to power cut offs. Basically the GSP plus will increase the demand in the international market but whats the use of this when we won’t be able to produce those goods?

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  • Ahmed
    Dec 13, 2013 - 12:28AM

    Definetly a good news. I just got one problem – the rich will get richer unless the government makes sure of bringing these big players into the tax net.

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  • faysal
    Dec 13, 2013 - 1:03AM

    dont spread false news that this step was initiated by previous government.this step was taken by current government.governer punjab adressed EU in october and voting was done in november 2013.give the credit where its due.this is a success of PMLN government..

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  • Farid Ali
    Dec 13, 2013 - 9:43AM

    CORRECTION: Check the lead. It’s not Generalized Scheme of Preferences but Generalized System of Preferences.

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  • Muslim Leaguer
    Dec 13, 2013 - 10:12AM

    While most of the Pakistanis (and even Indians) are rejoicing this great news to make South Asia the textile hub of the world and big boost in Pakistan’s exports, a few radicalized pseudo-intellectual trolls of PTI/JI/TTP/RSS are spreading skepticism.
    Perhaps they can’t digest any good news about Pakistan!

    Recommend

  • Muslim Leaguer
    Dec 13, 2013 - 11:26AM

    @ faysal @ PTIman
    You are right! The link is as follow: http://www.saach.tv/2013/12/12/uk-returned-governor-wins-gps-status-for-pakistan/ as well as http://www.nation.com.pk/national/13-Dec-2013/pakistan-secures-gsp-plus-status
    Perhaps someday ET also acknowledges the tireless efforts of Pakistani Leadership and raises its editorial standards!

    Recommend

  • Shariq
    Dec 13, 2013 - 12:14PM

    Good news, but hold on

    The GSP Plus is granted to those countries that ratify and implement international conventions relating to human and labour rights, environment and good governance.

    So can any one explain?

    Recommend

  • Dec 14, 2013 - 10:49AM

    Get the latest breaking news for sports, entertainment, business, politics,sports.
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  • PTIs
    Dec 19, 2013 - 2:12AM

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