ISLAMABAD: Sheikh Khalid Tawab (S.I), Acting President of Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce & Industry (FPCCI) has expressed his great concern on the news being circulated in the government corridor about the shifting of Trade Development Authority of Pakistan (TDAP) Head Office from Karachi to Islamabad.
In a statement issued here on Tuesday, he said that it would create unrest amongst the FPCCI Member Trade Bodies who have strongly condemned the proposed decision and supported the FPCCI instance to do away with the proposed move to shift the TDAP Head Office from Karachi.
The Acting President of FPCCI argued that it would add injuries to the manufacturers and exporters. He elaborated that Pakistan’s exports are showing declining trend due to a variety of reasons such as slump in global market even in the wake of granting GSP Plus status to Pakistan; erosion of competitive edge of indigenous products against the foreign goods in the international market mainly due to highest cost of exports; inordinate delay / non-payments of sales tax refund claims within stipulated time etc.
He said that the decision would serve as a catalyst to further decline the exports. Therefore, in this backdrop, the FPCCI Acting Chief proposed not to take such unnecessary and drastic decision.
He argued that Karachi is the financial and commercial capital of Pakistan in line with its status as a major port and the country’s largest metropolis; it generates a lion’s share of more than half of the total collection of Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) out of which approximately 50% are from customs duty and sales tax on imports.
In addition to it, he added, “Karachi produces about 30% of value added in large scale manufacturing (LSM); contributes 20% of GDP and shares 70% of the revenue of Pakistan”. That is why the World Bank identified Karachi as the most business-friendly city in Pakistan and as per finding of the research conducted by the Global Human Resources Company, “Mercer”, Karachi is the most inexpensive city in the world.
Moreover, most of the exhibitors are also situated in Karachi and there is also an Expo Centre in Karachi to showcase their products and promote exports. He added that it would create lack of coordination and interaction between the private sector enterprises and TDAP.
He informed that Karachi is situated at a most strategic location of the gate-way to Middle Eastern and European countries, and as such is considered as a most lucrative city for the foreign and local investment.
The Acting President of the FPCCI, therefore, reiterated the concerned quarters that the TDAP Head Office, in the greater interest of export-trade and industry must not be shifted from Karachi.