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ISLAMABAD: The Federal Cabinet Tuesday lifted the ban on export of Tyvek Suits and the anti-malarial drugs, including chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine. This decision was undertaken on a summary initiated by Ministry of Commerce.

According to the Commerce Ministry, now, with lifting of ban on Tyvek Suits, there is no ban on export of any of the Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) items. Sharing the details, the Commerce Ministry said that at the beginning of Covid outbreak in Pakistan in March 2020, the Federal Cabinet imposed a ban on the export of various items of Personal Protective Equipment as well as the anti-malarial drugs, which were being used as a part of treatment for Covid-19. Meanwhile, the Federal Cabinet constituted a committee, under the chairmanship of the Advisor to the Prime Minister on Commerce & Investment, Abdul Razak Dawood, and represented by all the relevant stakeholders, to oversee the stock positions of various PPE items and make recommendations to the Cabinet regarding exports of these items. Afterwards, the export of all Covid related materials were given under the mandate of the Committee by NCOC. The Committee has been holding regular meetings and, based on its recommendations, the ban on all the items, except the Tyvek Suits, was lifted in the meetings of the Cabinet held on June 06, 2020 and August 18, 2020.

The Ministry of National Health Services, Regulations and Coordination, which was represented in the Committee constituted by the Cabinet, conveyed the decision of 33 rd meeting of the Policy Board of Drugs Regulatory Authority (DRAP) held on August 17, 2020, for consideration of lifting ban on export of all anti-malaria drugs. The matter was also discussed in the Committee, which made recommendation on lifting of bans. "After the approval of the Cabinet for removing the ban on exports of PPE items as well as the anti-malarial drugs, the committee constituted by the Cabinet will continue to monitor the stock positions and requirements in the country," said the Commerce Ministry.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2020