Govt launches AEO Programme to facilitate business community

FBR chief says 'Authorised Economic Operators' Programme will help businesses achieve their maximum potential

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ISLAMABAD: The federal government has launched the first trade facilitation programme of its kind under the name and banner of “Authorised Economic Operators” (AEO).

The programme has been chalked out in line with best international practices and in accordance with WCO security standards. Under the said programme, the government would certify trustworthy business entities which could demonstrate that they are credible, secure and have a clean history of compliance with national laws and, in return, a policy of maximum facilitation would be adopted by all government departments toward such trusted entities so that they could concentrate on the growth of their businesses.

To highlight the spirit of AEO Programme, Federal Board of Revenue chairman convened a meeting of all government departments and border agencies who were taken on board on the said programme.

FBR Chairman Shabbar Zaidi informed the participants that the AEO Programme was a great step towards traders’ facilitation and ease of doing business as “red-tapism” of government departments would be replaced with “red carpet” for trustworthy business entities. “The programme will provide an enabling environment for the business community to achieve their maximum potential.”

Customs Member (Policy) Muhammad Javed Ghani requested the participants from all government departments to come forward for feedback to chalk out an attractive AEO Program that could meet maximum aspirations of the trade and industry.

The representatives from government departments i.e., Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Anti- Narcotics Force (ANF), Engineering Development Board (EDB), Ministry of Industries, Home Department Sind & KP, Pakistan Nuclear Regulatory Authority, Pakistan Quality Standards & Quality Certification Authority (PSQCA), Climate Change and PEMRA appreciated the AEO initiative and agreed that it was the first initiative of its kind which aims at recognition of trusted business partners at government level and entails benefits from all government departments.

Such a unique initiative, the participants said, has great potential to boost businesses which were the backbone of the national economy.

The FBR chairman briefed the participants that initially, the AEO Programme would be implemented on export stage that would not only boost national exports but would also play a vital role in job creation. Subsequently, the ambit of AEO Program would be extended to other sectors of the economy for maximum facilitation of businesses, he added.

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