LAHORE -  Pakistan Industrial and Traders Associations Front (PIAF) Chairman Irfan Iqbal Sheikh has called upon the government to reconsider its investment policies with particular focus to enhance foreign direct investment (FDI) in export sectors.

PIAF Chairman Irfan Iqbal Sheikh, in a joint statement along with senior vice chairman Tanveer Ahmed Sufi and vice chairman Khawaja Shahzeb Akram, said that foreign investment inflows have been on a steep downward path, falling from $4.44 billion in 2014 to $1 billion in 2015-16. Coupled with similar declines in exports, this paints a worrying picture of the state of the external sector, he pointed out.

Irfan Iqbal Sheikh said that instead of focusing on FDI in certain lucrative sectors, government should ensure that inward FDI should play more effective role in facilitating technology transfer to the country, innovation and human resource development.

He said that last year saw a steep decline in foreign investment which fell below the one-billion-dollar level for the first time in four years, led primarily by portfolio and public investment. PIAF chairman said the decline in direct investment from China has shown the steepest declines.

Chairman PIAF said that the government should heed the advice being given by the State Bank and do more to improve the overall investment climate in the country, rather than focus so heavily on the Chinese alone, in order to reverse this trend in a more credible way.