Govt takes steps to enhance exports of value added products; Senate told

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ISLAMABAD, Mar 8 (APP): Minister for Commerce Engr. Khurram Dastgir Khan on Wednesday informed the Senate that several steps have been taken under Strategic Trade Policy Framework (STPF) 2015-18 to enhance exports of value added products.
In a written reply, the minister informed the Senate that technology up-gradation support was provided in the shape of investment and mark-up support to industries related fans, home appliances, rice, cutlery and sports goods.
He said that 20% investment support upto a maximum of Rs 1 million per annum per company will be available for import of new plant and machinery.
He added 50% of markup support on up-gradation of technology will be provided for import of new machinery/plant, subject to a maximum of Rs 1 million per annum per company.
He said that matching grant upto a maximum of Rs 5 million for specified plant and machinery or specified items to improve product design and encourage innovation in SMEs and export sectors of leather, pharmaceutical and fisheries.
He said that Common Facility Center for Surgical goods will be established while facilitation and support was provided for the branding and certification of the SME and export sector through intellectual property registration, certification and accreditation.
He said that to reduce the wastage of produce, several measures were undertaken in the selected agriculture sectors including 50% support on the cost of imported new plant and machinery for specified under-developed regions and 100% mark-up support on the cost of imported new plant and machinery on all Pakistan basis.
He said that Prime Minister’s Trade Enhancement Package has provided zero rating of machinery imports and drawback of taxes, cascaded in terms of value addition, to encourage exports of the value-added goods.
He said that several incentives have been introduced in the STPF 2015-18 for the development of rice export including while 20% investment support upto a maximum of Rs 1 million per annum per company will be available for import of new plant and machinery.
He added 50% of markup support on up-gradation of technology will be provided for import of new machinery and plant, subject to a maximum of Rs 1 million per annum per company.
He said for short-term export enhancement, “basmati rice” has been selected as a focus product especially to enhance parboiled basmati rice export to the world in general and Iran and Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) in particular, as these two markets cater for 55% of the total basmati rice import market of the world.
He said that Rs 50 million was released during previous two financial years for establishment of Pakistan readymade garment technical training institute at Sialkot.
He added the project is under implementation.