Engr. Khurram Dastgir Khan, Federal Minister for Commerce visited the OICCI

Engr. Khurram Dastgir Khan, Federal Minister for Commerce visited the Overseas Investors Chamber of Commerce & Industry (OICCI), Karachi on Thursday October 2, 2014.

Atif Bajwa, Vice President, OICCI briefed the Minister of the key concerns of the members and potential foreign investors, which included, Pakistan’s below potential share of world trade, frequent and sudden policy changes combined with insufficient engagement of the Federal and provincial government functionaries with key stakeholders, like OICCI, before introducing new regulations and policy changes, lack of fair and transparent drug registration and pricing policy, stalled implementation of IPR Act 2012, cumbersome and time consuming processes of the Pakistan Standards Quality Control Authority, abuse of Afghan Transit Trade facility having negative impact on compliant business organizations and government revenues. In general, OICCI added, that there was dissatisfaction with policy implementation and that the list of pending issues are piling up. OICCI further highlighted that against its share of 0.3 percent of the global GDP, Pakistan international trade is only 0.17 percent which is $60 billion short of its due share and is absorbed by other regional countries.

The concerns were followed by several recommendations which included need for an effective and transparent governance to improve regulatory framework including filling vacancies at key institutions like SECP, IPOP, DRAP and NEPRA. OICCI also suggested that each government department should prepare at least 3 key areas for improvement annually which should be duly monitored for progress, GoP to implement the 2010 McKenzie Consultants recommendations, especially on export diversification, development of a trade policy framework with focus on potential untapped markets, to provide a support structure for taking advantage of EU GSP Plus offer and immediate and full implementation of the Intellectual Property Act 2012.

In his comments, Engr. Khurram Dastgir Khan, Minister of Commerce promised full support to address all issues raised by OICCI, including improvement on ease of doing business, timely tax refunds, introducing predictability in policies, consultation with OICCI on various policies impacting foreign investors. Minister further added that his top priority is to ensure increase of the country’s trade and he is coordinating with all the Ministries and government departments, including FBR to ensure all fiscal and administrative policies are geared to facilitate significant increase of export trade.  He appreciated the research publications of OICCI and emphasized the need of close working relations between various Government Ministries and OICCI for facilitating a business friendly climate and removal of business irritants to facilitate increased level of FDI inflow into Pakistan. He also mentioned that Pakistan has great potential and an encouraging environment for Foreign Direct Investment in various sectors and the government is working towards more economic liberalization/deregulation and reforms for realizing this potential.

OICCI is the collective voice of 195 leading foreign investors belonging to 35 countries and include many leading Fortune 500 companies operating in Pakistan. OICCI members collectively contribute one third of the total revenues collected in the country besides facilitating transfer of technology and skills and employment to a sizeable number of people.

Visit the OICCI website www.oicci.org for more information.

© 2012 Overseas Investors Chambers of Commerce and Industry
The Overseas Investors Chamber of Commerce & Industry (OICCI) serves as the national point of reference for foreign investors in Pakistan. Established in 1860 as the Karachi Chamber of Commerce, it is the oldest of the existing chambers.