Adviser to Prime Minister on Commerce, Textile, Industry, Production and Investment Abdul Razak Dawood has cherished the modest rise in Pakistan’s exports to leading markets around the globe.
“Our exports have done quite well in major markets during fiscal year 2020-21,” he said in a tweet on Tuesday. “Shipments to China rose by 34% to $2.33 billion compared to $1.74 billion in the previous fiscal year, increasing by $586 million.”
He added that exports to Germany swelled 19% to $1.5 billion in the previous fiscal year against $1.3 billion worth of merchandise sent to the European nation in fiscal year 2019-20.
In addition, he lauded that exports to the Netherlands increased 23% to $1.2 billion in the period under review as opposed to $1 billion in fiscal year 2019-20.
According to the adviser, shipments to Poland rose from $241 million in 2019-20 to $308 million in 2020-21, an increase of 28%.
He praised the exporters for achieving the feat despite the disruption caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.
Centre for Peace and Development Initiatives (CPDI) Executive Director Mukhtar Ahmad Ali termed the increase in exports positive development and said that sustaining the growth momentum over the long term would be a challenge for the country.
“This will require appropriate incentives for the industry coupled with uninterrupted supply of energy, including gas and electricity,” he said while talking to The Express Tribune.
“A small share in this growth could have been witnessed due to lockdowns in countries which compete with Pakistan in export markets.”
He suggested that Pakistan should adopt a wait and see strategy and check movement of Pakistan’s exports after lockdowns were lifted in rival nations.
“It is heartening to see that exports have registered a sharp jump in FY21,” remarked Karachi Chamber of Commerce and Industry President Shariq Vohra.
“While the Covid-19 pandemic has created a lot of difficulties in doing business across the world, it has also turned out to be a blessing in disguise for some segments and countries.”
Pakistan remained resilient at a time when the whole world faced economic shutdown and that provided Islamabad with an opportunity compared to its rivals, which led to a boost in its exports, he said.
Subsequently, when lockdowns were lifted around the globe and the economic situation began to normalise, an upsurge in demand for products was witnessed, he said.
“Pakistani exporters capitalised on this opportunity despite the extraordinary circumstances,” he said.
He also attributed the rise in exports to stable economic policies and improvement in business environment in Pakistan.
However, he said it was too early to claim that export growth would be sustainable because economic activities stand disrupted at present.
Association of Pakistan Motorcycle Assemblers (APMA) Chairman Muhammad Sabir Shaikh said that if the government aided localisation of the electric two-wheeler segment, then the sector could alone export $20 billion worth of bikes over the next five years.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 7th, 2021.
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