LAHORE - The business community has called for more policy reforms to get maximum benefits from Generalised Scheme of Preferences (GSP) Plus status awarded to Pakistan by European Union; providing Pakistani products easy access to the EU markets.

Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry Standing Committee on Economic Reforms Chairman Kashif Anwar said that the extended status of GSP Plus would provide another opportunity to Pakistan to boost its exports. He said that a comprehensive strategy is needed to attain benefits of GSP Plus status. The former LCCI vice president praised the efforts of Federal Minister for Commerce Pervaiz Malik and Federal Secretary for Commerce Muhammad Younus Dhaga for their serious and practical efforts including lobbying at different levels for the extension of status to Pakistan.

He also stressed the private sector to work together to take full advantage of the GSP Plus status, which has been granted till 2023.

He pointed out that GSP Plus had given better market access for products made in Pakistan to the entire European Union. It is very much now in the hands of the business community, both here in Pakistan and the EU, to utilise this facility available for boosting trade between the two sides,” he said.

Kashif Anwar said that GSP Plus status is monitored and reviewed after every two years and Pakistan is still eligible for the preferential trade facility. He suggested that industry with the assistance of government should take full advantage of GSP Plus and increase exports of its traditional and non-traditional products to the EU member states.

Presently, more than 80pc of Pakistan’s exports to the EU consist of textile and clothing. Almost 72pc of exports to the EU went to five countries, including the UK, Germany, Spain, the Netherlands and Italy.