Pakistan signs agreement with Iran to construct border markets

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Islamabad

Adviser to Prime Minister on Commerce and Investment Abdul Razak Dawood Friday informed the Senate that an agreement has been signed with Iran to construct markets at border to facilitate the traders of the area.

Speaking during Question Hour in the House, the adviser said the construction of markets would be started soon that would bring progress and prosperity in the area.

He said there has been an increase of 7.14 percent (in USD terms) in the total value of exports for the period July-2020 to March-2021 compared to the same period of financial year-2019-2020.

As compared to March, 2020, he said the increase in exports for the month of March 2021, is 30.66 percent (in USD terms).

He said the government is making concerted efforts to promote exports through facilitation of the industrial sector; to reduce its costs, duties on raw materials have been rationalized.

The Adviser said that in addition to that, for export-oriented sectors gas and – RLNG prices have been rationalized at Rs.852/MMBtu and $6.5/ MMBtu respectively.

He said to support local industry, electricity has been provided at 9 cents/kWh to export-oriented sectors including textile and apparel, and that the government has announced 50 percent relief in electricity tariff until June 2021 for SMEs.

To provide easier financing, he said the mark up on Long Term Financing Facility (LTFF) and Export Finance Scheme (EFS) has been continued at 5 percent and 3 percent respectively.

The Tariff Policy Board (TPB) under National Tariff Policy (NTP) decided to rationalize tariffs, through the Finance Act, 2020, on almost 2000 tariff lines.

The additional customs duty of 2 percent on 1623 tariff lines, consisting of basic raw material used by the industry, has been removed, he added.—APP