Secretary Commerce, Mr. Mohammad Younus Dagha visits the OICCI

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The Secretary Commerce Mr Mohammad Younus Dagha visited the OICCI on January 8, 2018 for an interactive session with members. He was welcomed by the OICCI President Khalid Mansoor, OICCI Members Kimihide Ando, Shazia Syed and CE/Secretary General M. Abdul Aleem. A number of member companies CEOs and senior representatives also attended the session.

The OICCI President shared with the participants that Mr Dagha had played a pivotal role in initiating the Thar coal project when he was the Secretary Water and Power. Khalid Mansoor also gave a brief introduction of the OICCI profile and CSR activities of the members which last year benefitted over 40 million persons from the underprivileged segment of the population of the country.

Abdul Aleem informed the Commerce Secretary about the results of the OICCI sponsored Business Confidence Index survey, wave 15, released in November 2017, which shows that the business community confidence has gone up by a good margin as compared to the last survey, with reasons for this upswing (mainly improvements in security and energy), their views on the country’s export related issues and suggestions for diversifying the exports, concerns on sudden changes in government policies and perceived threats to business. The survey respondents included some OICCI members, selected randomly, and these leading foreign investors continue to remain relatively more positive as compared to the overall business community perception. The SG also emphasized that the survey was not one-dimensional as 44% respondents were positive and 23% expressed  negative views on the business environment expressing growing concerns on adhocism and  improper policy implementation. He also shared a couple of points from the OICCI members Perception and Investment Survey 2017, which he informed will be released after a meeting with the Prime Minister of Pakistan on January 10, 2018. Other slides shared included results of OICCI members Security and IPR related matters.

The SG also shared issues conveyed by member companies as well as recommendations on matters related to rationalization of tariffs and more balanced FTAs to ensure appropriate protection for local manufacturers, standard market value to curb under-Invoicing,  anomalies in import policy of Palm Stearin hurting local manufacturers, review of high import duties to curb smuggling, hurdles in Asian Clearing Union (ACU)$ payment settlement in respect of trade with Iran and India, regulatory duty on raw materials used in banknote manufacturing supplied to Pakistan Security Printing Corporation hurting Government and anomalies on import of essential spare parts. He also requested the Commerce Secretary for regular IPOP Policy Board meetings and enforcement of all provisions of the very good IPOP Act 2012.

Mr Mohammad Younus Dagha informed that he has been a regular visitor to the Chamber, including in his previous role as Secretary Water and Power and he gives a lot importance to the contribution of the Chamber and its members towards the economy of the country and improving the overall business climate.

The Commerce Secretary mentioned about the steps taken/being taken by the government to address the trade imbalance as reducing the current fiscal deficit and balance of payment gap is a key priority of the government. The Secretary Commerce requested OICCI members support in drafting of the five year Trade Policy (STPF 2018-23) by getting a feedback from their associated organizations in regional companies in Vietnam, Indonesia, Malaysia etc, as to how exports have been increased by these countries as similar policies could be used in developing the STPF 2018-23.

 He addressed all the issues taken up by the Chamber and also the participants in the Q and A session and promised to review all the matters for resolving the issues.

© 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.