PRGMEA calls for ensuring ease of doing business

19

LAHORE, Apr 16 (APP):Pakistan Readymade Garments Manufacturers & Exporters Association (PRGMEA), in its budget proposals for 2018-19, has called for ease of doing business, lowering cost of production, solution of liquidity crunch through early refunds payment, equal energy tariff and relaxed import policy for industrial raw material so that industrialisation can be promoted and exports can be enhanced.
PRGMEA Senior Vice Chairman Sheikh Luqman Amin disclosed this in a media statement issued here Monday. He mentioned that Pakistan’s global ranking of doing business was at 147 out of 190 countries and it was mainly due to bureaucratic hurdles, as more than 20 departments were involved to regulate business/industry.
He added that various provincial departments including Employees’ Old-Age Benefits Institution (EOBI), Social Security, Women Welfare, Environment Department should have to facilitate the manufacturers and exporters in a better way. “It is our request to deduct a reasonable percentage from the realised amount to give an easy way to the exporters to cope with this critical situation and to focus on the marketing and increase of export. We request for easy process in the contribution of EOBI, Social Security etc.” he maintained.
He said that Pakistan’s core issue was high cost of doing business which rendered its industrial production uncompetitive, suggesting the government to work on bringing around significant improvements in ease and cost of doing business for the export industry.
Sheikh Luqman said that all stuck-up claims of the exporters (Drawback of Local Taxes and Levies-DLTL, Dividend Distribution Tax-DDT, Customs Rebates, Sales Tax rebates, etc.) should be released. The liquidity crunch was a major stumbling block in the way of improving exports, he maintained.
In the budget proposals, he urged the government to work on a fast track plan to address energy issues. Priority should be given to export-oriented garments sector, which was the highest value-added link in the entire textile value chain.
He said that government should introduce the liberal import policy for raw materials for re-export like duty-free import of fabrics and accessories which are not being manufactured in Pakistan. “We request that import of fabric to be allowed under the simple and easy procedure instead of DTRE (Duty & Tax Remission for Export), which is very complicated and only two percent exporter can avail importation under DTRE facility,” he added.
Sheikh Luqman said that rupee depreciation versus US dollar had no connection with cotton yarn prices, but the unprecedented surge in cotton yarn rates had hit the export-oriented value-added textile sector hard. PRGMEA had appealed for duty-free yarn import to encourage value-addition, reduce cost of doing business and bridge the gap between production and consumption. He also urged the government to review its Textile Policy to remove hurdles in exports and to enable the textile sector to attain the targets.
PRGMEA proposes that special lending rates should be given to the garment sector, adding that all existing loans included (Part 1 & 2) should be on zero markup with allocation on total export performance.
PRGMEA urged the government to continue the sales tax zero-rating facility to five export-oriented sectors in the upcoming federal budget 2018-19 to revive industrial viability, besides extending zero-rating to packing material as well.