KARACHI: The Vice President of the Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI), Shaikh Sultan Rehman, has said that the FPCCI has been conducting a survey to analyze the impact of COVID-19 on trade and industry on different countries.
Speaking at a Specialized Committee Meeting of Industry, Investment and SMEs Promotion of ECO Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ECO-CCI) held through a video link and attended by representatives of the chambers of commerce and industry of Afghanistan, Iran, Turkey and Pakistan and ECO Trade and Development Bank, he said that the industry was the real sector of the economy which had significant linkages with other sectors of economy. Unfortunately, COVID-19 had significantly affected the economy of Pakistan through declining economic growth, industrial production, exports, remittances, tax revenue collection, disruption in supply chain and decline in demand for non-essential items.
He also informed the meeting about measures taken by the Government of Pakistan and the State Bank of Pakistan for facilitating industry and investment in Pakistan particularly in the health sector. Abrar Ahmed, convener of the Specialized Committee on Industry, Investment and SMEs' Promotion, discussed with the participants of the meeting Pakistan government's measures like reduction in policy rate, deferment of loans and debts, soft loans to industries for payment of wages and salaries, concessionary loans to the SMEs and the agriculture sector.
During the meeting, the participants shared with each other their experiences of the pandemic and measures taken by their governments for facilitating trade and industry. They also discussed in detail ECO investment conference, promotion of Halal food industry, harmonization of visa regime, problems related to the SMEs, promotion of barter trade and opening of border gates, implementation of ECO trade transit agreement, holding of ECO trade facilitation agreement and ECO trade fairs.
Copyright Business Recorder, 2020