FPCCI’s presidential candidate, Atif Ikram Sheikh, lauded the government for setting up the Industrial Advisory Council and assured the full cooperation of the business community. Headed by the Federal Minister of Industry and Production, Gohar Ejaz, the council comprises reputable personalities who will advise the government to boost industrial production in the country and tackle issues confronting industrialisation proactively, he said.
Atif Ikram Sheikh, who has also served as VP FPCCI, Chairman PVMA and President ICCI said in a statement issued here today that Muhammad Ali Tibba, Fawad Ahmed Mukhtar, Raza Mansha, Aamir Fayyaz Sheikh, Waqar Ahmed Malik, Abdul Samad Dawood, Shehbaz Yasin Malik, Shahzad Asghar Ali, Syed Haider Ali, Farooq Naseem, Ahsan Bashir and Sameer Chinoy have been included in the council.
Moreover, the council members include all the provincial chief secretaries, including the chief secretaries of Azad Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan, the finance secretary, the commerce secretary, the industry and production secretary and the chairman of FBR.
He said the council would meet every week and submit a report in 10 weeks, adding that the business community is pinning high hopes on them.
The business leader said that the industry is a struggling sector in Pakistan that needs the attention of policymakers as it can resolve the issue of employment, borrowing and forex earnings.
He informed that Pakistan’s exports were $25 billion in 2013. These are around $30 billion in 2023. Imports were $ 43 billion in 2013 against $ 70 billion in 2023.
If the exports and imports had kept the same pace, the trade deficit would have been around $13 to $15 billion annually.
Due to almost stagnant exports, they ranged between $ 18 and $ 25 billion. Thus, if the exports had kept pace with the import increase, the foreign loans of Pakistan would have been $80 billion to $100 billion less with a foreign exchange rate of around Rs 100 to 120 per dollar.
In comparison, Bangladesh exported $45 billion worth of clothing in 2022. This South Asian country’s was around $25 billion in 2013. India’s annual textile exports stood at $44.4 billion in FY2022. In 2013, they were around USD 24 billion. If we had followed in the footsteps of our South Asian neighbours, our exports would have been around $45 billion.