PR No. 221 Islamabad: April 26, 2016

Minister for Commerce, Engr. Khurram Dastgir Khan has said that the Ministry of Commerce is focusing to develop and train new exporters from SME sector to boost Pakistan’s export in the coming years. There is a need of a hand-holding of the prospective SME exporters and guide them to graduate to the next level, he said. The Minister made these remarks while talking to a delegation of technical experts of Center for Promotion of Imports from Developing Countries (CBI) based in The Hague, Netherlands.

CBI is working in Pakistan since 2008 and is in the process of developing its new five-year plan for Pakistan. A team of technical experts from Netherlands is visiting Pakistan to seek ground-level information to provide input for the next plan. The Minister asked the CBI experts to focus on assisting Pakistani enterprises to develop their products through Export Coaching Programs (ECPs) in Industrial and consumer products primarily in fruits and vegetables sector, floriculture, fisheries, specific sectors of textile and light engineering according to GSP Plus requirements. He also asked the CBI delegation to lay special emphasis on export coaching, institutional development and human resource development in the next plan.

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

CBI will also work for institutional development of other Business Support Organisations (BSO) active in the industrial, surgical, medical equipment and agriculture sectors. The CBI is currently extending its support to Pakistan Institute of Trade and Development, National Productivity Organizations, Trade Development Authority of Pakistan, Engineering Development Board, SMEDA and PAAPAM.

The representatives of the CBI said that their focus is to address the issues of prospective exporters at the sectoral level and build a sustainable supply chain for exports. CBI will provide expert level guidance for product sophistication, certification, standardization and laboratory testing in order to prepare new exporters for the standard-conscious western markets.

The organization also plans to extend their projects to the northern parts of the country with the improvement of excess in near future. It will also focus on women entrepreneurs all across the countries and plans to train new exporters from women entrepreneurs. The team of experts will work in coordination with the private and public sector in order to identify the barriers which hinder the potential entry of SMEs into export sector and will chalk out a plan to remove those impediments.