Mr. Noor Ahmed Khan, Acting President of the Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry has shown his serious concern over the missing targets of economic growth for FY19. He indicated that the current GDP growth rate at 3.3 % against the target of 6.2 % and negative growth rate in Large Scale Manufacturing (LSM) indicates very dismal performance of economy particularly in textile, Food, Beverage & Tobacco, Petroleum Products, Pharmaceuticals, Chemicals, Non-Metallic Mineral Products, Automobiles and Iron & Steel products.
The Acting President emphasized on the need of strong industrial policy that encourage agro-based industries in Pakistan which is a real sector of the economy and can contribute significantly in poverty alleviation and employment generation. He stated that there are huge potential available for new industries based on agriculture sector that need to be materialized and be protected by giving them incentives. At present, there are very low tariff on agriculture commodities which encourage the imports of agriculture products while our regional competitors like China, Iran, India, Sri Lanka etc have high tariff rates on agriculture products which protect their domestic production.
He further stated that textile industry is backbone of Pakistan but the production of cotton has declined to 9 million bales compared to 14 million bales in 2015. He stated that the declining of production of cotton also affects the exports of textile in next year. He suggested the government to take revolutionary measures for agriculture sector for increasing their production. Apart from agriculture, there is a need of protection of other basic industries like pharmaceutical, sport goods, chemicals, leather by introducing technological advancement, improving infrastructure of industrial zones and other measures for enhancement of their competitiveness, he added.