Dawood hopes for successfully completion of 4th Biennial Review of GSP-Plus

Dawood hopes for successfully completion of 4th Biennial Review of GSP-Plus
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ISLAMABAD, Oct 06 (APP): Adviser to the Prime Minister on Commerce and Investment, Abdul Razzaq Dawood on Wednesday hoped that 4th Biennial Review of Eurpeon Union (EU) Generalized Scheme of Preference (GSP) Plus incentive will be successfully completed.

As the 4th Biennial Review of GSP Plus incentive is currently underway, “I am confident that due to the positive initiatives by the government it will be successfully completed” he said. The Adviser conveyed, that “EU is our biggest export partner and we have excellent relations with all EU Member States, said a press release issued by Ministry of Commerce.

He said that if you see our exports country-wise, EU Member Countries will be in the top ten export destinations. Abdul Razzaq Dawood said the five new International Conventions in the new GSP scheme were in line with government’s priorities and “we are already taking steps to ensure labour rights, child rights and rights of the persons with disabilities.”

“I can assure that the Government of Pakistan is already committed to the cause”. On the issue of Paris Agreement on Climate Change, he mentioned that Pakistan has joined the international community in celebrating the “World Environment Day 2021”, as its global host, on June 5, 2021 which carried special significance as it also witnessed the formal launch of “United Nations Decade on Ecosystem Restoration 2021-2030”.

The observance of World Environment Day 2021 on the theme of “ecosystem restoration” is fully aligned with Prime Minister Imran Khan’s Green Vision, as manifested in Pakistan’s flagship “ecosystem restoration Initiative, he said.”

He said that Pakistan was already in the midst of one of the world’s most ambitious efforts to expand and restore its forests, having already planted a billion trees as part of its 10 Billion Tree Project. The legislative proposal for the new GSP scheme will now be submitted to the European Council and Parliament for detailed deliberations before adoption, he said.

The Adviser said that once the European Council and Parliament adopt the new scheme, Pakistan, like any other beneficiary country of the GSP scheme, will have to file a new application for the new GSP scheme and ratify and implement 32 International Conventions.

The Fourth Biennial Review (2020–2021) has commenced and Pakistan has submitted its responses to the EU on the list of issues and follow up questions on September 15, 2020 and September 15, 2021, respectively.

Now the EU monitoring mission was expected to visit Pakistan in November 2021. The European Commission has published the new proposed legislation for GSP Scheme on September 22, 2021.

Under the new GSP Scheme the beneficiary countries including Pakistan, will have to ratify and implement, five new International Conventions in addition to previous 27 UN Conventions, thus bringing the total number to 32 International Conventions.

So far three successful biennial reviews have been concluded in 2016, 2018 and 2020 respectively. European Union’s ‘Special Incentive Arrangement for Good Governance and Sustainable Development’ (GSP- Plus) was a pivotal mechanism for improving economic relations between Pakistan and EU, whereby Pakistan is given zero

rated tariff preferences on almost 91 percent of tariff lines to the EU market.
GSP-Plus incentive provides many Pakistani export oriented products including garments, bed linen, terry towels, hosiery, leather, sports and surgical goods etc. duty free access in the EU market.

The EU GSP Plus is linked with the implementation of 27 UN Conventions on human rights, labour rights, climate change, governance and narcotics control.
After every two years a review is carried out by the European Union to ensure the commitment of the beneficiary countries to effectively implement these 27 UN Conventions.

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