LAHORE - The Board of Investment (BOI) Chairman Haroon Sharif has said the government is striving to attract local as well as foreign investment with consistent policies and long-term measures for boosting exports and industrial production in the country.

He was addressing the board members of the All Pakistan Business Forum who gathered on a breakfast hosted in honour of him by the APBF here at a hotel.

The meeting was also addressed by the APBF President Syed Maaz Mahmood, general secretary Khurram Niyaz, besides the managing committee members, belonging to various industrial sectors of the country. The APBF Board members actively participated in the meeting and discussed a host of issues faced by the business community with the BOI Chairman.

The BOI Chairman apprised the business leaders that Pakistan has been ensuring equal opportunities and incentives for local and foreign investors. He said that the government is formulating an industrial policy to reduce the cost of doing business and increase exports. He said the new policy, which the government would present within few months, would be industry-centric, and invited the input of industrialists in this regard.

He spoke at length about the proposed industrial policy and its impact to encourage exports from the country. He urged the APBF Board members to discourage imports and promote industrial investment. He said that a comprehensive industrial policy will create an enabling environment for broad-based industrialization and encourage innovation in a wide range of sectors. He added that it was not possible that textile sector alone can help Pakistan enhance its export proceeds to a reasonable good numbers.

All Pakistan Business Forum President Syed Maaz Mahmood, on this occasion, observed that the APBF is ready to work closely with the government to resolve industrial issues for ease of doing business and to enhance exports and revive growth momentum. He also briefed him about role of APBF and its various investment conferences to highlight Pakistan’s economic potential in front of the global community.

Maaz Mahmood elaborated that there was great potential for exports of Pakistan goods which are not being utilized. He urged the government that the focus of its new policies should be to offer long-term predictable incentives for investors and promote exports from the country.

The APBF Board members, on this occasion, observed that Pakistan is a resource-rich country and does not need any external financial help.

They were of the view that market and products diversification is the best method to boost exports. They said that Pakistani exports always remained dependent on a few items and countries, and urged the government to task Pakistani missions abroad with finding new destinations.

They said that government should also facilitate export-oriented industries by resolving their genuine issues like delay in refunds. The Board members also stressed on taking advantage of the beautiful landscapes in the country to enhance the tourism industry. Keeping in view of changing global scenario, the government’s immediate economic planning and its implementation is a must to avert any serious challenge to the national sovereignty.