SIALKOT: President Sialkot Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCI) Zahid Latif Malik has stressed the need of setting up “Support industry” to facilitate industrial sector of the country.
Talking to media here on Sunday he said that export sector of the country heavily relies on import of raw materials especially from China for further value addition and re-exports adding that this practice adds to the cost of doing business and was major contributor towards increasing import bill of the counrty.
He said that in order to cope with future challenges of industrial sector government should encourage the businessmen and investors to invest in support industry which would ultimately lead to import substitution of especially raw material utilized by local industry.
He said that local and foreign investors should be encouraged to invest in support industry like accessories of textile and clothing, printing and packaging,etching and polishing chemicals used in surgical instruments industry and others.
The SCCI president also stressed the need of carrying out a detailed study by taking all chambers and associations on board for identifying the list of major supporting products which were imported from various countries.
The SCCI president advised the government to provide interest free loan 10 per cent of total export for import of new technology to business community to upgrade its industrial units.
He said the same policy should be applied in Special Economic Zones (SEPs) being established by the government in line with China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) initiative with concept to promote import substitution.
He said that Sialkot was significant contender where SEZ could be established by considering the strong industrial base of the city adding that Sialkot was the only export-oriented city in the country where 99 per cent of the manufactured exported to international markets and earning $ 2 billion.
Keeping in view the importance and contribution there was a need of setting up support industry in Sialkot which would reduce imports to serve as a source of raw materials for export industry, he added.
The SCCI president further said that establishment of SEZ in Sialkot was direly needed and Chinese investors should be encouraged to bring their investment adding that timely action in this regard would prove revolutionary if implemented in all industrial hubs of the country including Sialkot.