ISLAMABAD: Adviser to Prime Minister on Commerce and Investment Abdul Razak Dawood on Sunday said the Ministry of Commerce had resolved to achieve a $26 billion export target in the next three years by exploring new trade markets across the world.
The PM’s advisor said that trade diversification, regional trade integration through Gwadar Port and exploring the new market like Africa region, North and South America, and enhancing the production of engineering good for increasing export are the main agenda of the government to boost exports.
“Another major focus is on expanding the role of the digital economy and connecting with the international market to increase exports and create new employment opportunities for youth,” he said.
Razak Dawood said that the availability of international payment gateways in Pakistan would also be ensured to facilitate exporters.
“All government procurements and transactions would be shifted to e-procurement and online payment systems within three years while provincial revenue authorities would harmonise their GST collection system to avoid double taxation for e-commerce platforms,” he said.
He also informed that the STPF would ensure the creation of liaison of different sectors’ exports from conventional economies with online markets through e-commerce policy.
Speaking to the media, he said that the upcoming Strategic Trade Policy Framework would address the needs of the modern economy where sales on online markets make a significant contribution towards economic activities.
Razak said that the country’s e-commerce policy was aimed at providing a launching pad to Pakistan’s e-commerce market and exports while driving youth empowerment and employment generation through digital connectivity.
“It would also empower women entrepreneurs in Pakistan and encourage the micro, small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to play their role in the economic prosperity of Pakistan, and be a tool for export enhancement through connecting with global e-commerce platforms,” he added.
He said that under this policy, a high-powered national e-commerce council will be developed at the federal and provincial levels for proper and effective implementation of the e-commerce policy.
Further, he explained that the policy presents an opportunity to bring SMEs into the mainstream and connect them with Pakistani as well as international markets through online platforms.
The PM’s advisor also revealed that the government would soon launch the that Pak e-SME programme to identify, train, enable, and connect 50,000 e-SMEs of the remote areas of Pakistan to online market places for promoting e-commerce.
Additionally, to facilitate businesses, he said that an e-commerce business facilitation hub will be created, and a commerce aggregator will also be developed with Public-Private Partnership (PPP) to showcase e-commerce companies in Pakistan in front of the world.
In this regard, the existing federal and provincial consumer protection laws would be amended to adequately address consumer disputes arising through e-commerce platforms.
“Consumer protection will be ensured through proper implementation of a code of conduct by e-commerce platforms while e-courts will be established for quick processing of consumer cases and their disposal in an efficient and effective manner,” he added.
Moreover, efforts would be made to convert all Cash on Delivery (COD) payments into e-payment preferably within 10 years to promote financial inclusion and digitisation.