News Brief

Govt asked to award industry status to furniture sector

LAHORE (INP): FPCCI President Zubair Tufail on Friday said the govt needs to take several steps like providing fiscal support for skills training and upgradation of machines with a view to boost labour intensive furniture sector besides awarding industry status to this sector for boosting export. Talking to a delegation of Pakistan Furniture Council (PFC) led by its Chief Executive Mian Kashif Ashfaq at FPCCI regional chamber, FPCCI President Zubair Tufail said that local furniture sector attached great importance to national economy and could make a substantial contribution of billions of dollars export annually if government properly patronizes it on priority for boosting export of Pak-handmade furniture. He urged the government to establish greater liaison with this sector to fully understand the market conditions and requirements of the industry needs for its protection, development and promotion. He said the govt should also provide more visible support to furniture business.

 in terms of simple and easily obtainable grants for exhibiting and traveling to trade shows and promoting Pak export as a success globally.

He said currently, the textile sector was the country’s largest industry in terms of exports, exporting $14 billion worth of goods annually.

FPCCI President suggested that a programme for developing and promoting the furniture sector both in rural and urban areas could be feasible, and also stressed the need for implementing modern techniques which not only enhance productivity, develop skills of labour and meet requirements of local and global markets.

PFC Chief Kashif Ashfaq said there was great potential in Pakistan’s local furniture industry which needed a greater acknowledgment by the government. He praised the furniture carving industry of Chiniot, Gujrat and Gojra and said that it required the government’s support to get promoted internationally. He mentioned, “Around Rs 4 billion worth of furniture is imported but unfortunately, exports remain at Rs 0.7 billion, which clearly shows the condition of the local furniture industry,” he cited, while stressing the need to promote local industry.

He said that if the required support was given to manufacturers and brands to reach out to international market, Pakistan’s industry would contribute to the economy and furniture products would be considered leaders in the international market.

He said the PFC was playing a commendable role in bringing the latest technical know-how in Pakistan for promotion of local furniture industry, manufacturing of quality products, and competitiveness in the international market.

In order to boost furniture exports, he suggested, the government should take steps to curb ‘Sheesham’ wood smuggling in the garb of raw material, besides awarding the furniture a status of full-fledged industry. Secretary PFC Hamid  Mahmood was also present on the occasion. FPCCI says Pakistan’s debt servicing

ability compromised

ISLAMABAD (INP): The Businessmen Panel of the FPCCI on Friday said debt servicing has become impossible for the government therefore it must take new loans to repay loans otherwise country may face a default. The process must not be delayed as it will have a negative impact on the economy which is already facing many troubles including twin deficit. The economy needs cash which is fast disappearing, therefore, the government should try to get a loan from friendly countries or the institutions which did not attack tough conditions to the loans, it said. The government should keep the loan from the IMF as a last option and negotiate it in a way to keep economy and masses from the notorious condition of the lender, said Naseem-Ur-Rehman, a central leader of the BMP. He said that Pakistan must service debts which will require billions of dollars otherwise it would be declared a defaulted country which we cannot afford as it will result in the excessive printing of money which will skyrocket the inflation.

The business leader said that country is facing the problem of cash flow which is necessary for rapid development; therefore, urgent steps should be taken.

 Nearly Rs24 billion tax collected in five months in Sindh: Minister

KARACHI (NNI): Provincial Minister for Excise & Taxation & Narcotics Control Mukesh Kumar Chawla has said that during current fiscal year’s first five months (July to November), Sindh Excise and Taxation Department has collected Rs23970.376 million while in same period during last financial year Rs.21511.039 million were collected. He stated this while presiding over a meeting in his office on Friday. Secretary Excise and Taxation – Narcotics Control Abdul Haleem Shaikh, Director General ET & NC Shoaib Ahmed Siddiqui and other regional directors also attended the meeting. While briefing the meeting, DG Shoaib Ahmed Siddiqui told that Rs.2726.158 million were collected in terms of motor vehicle tax, Rs16385.149 million were in infrastructure cess, Rs192.837 in professional tax, Rs.124.621 million in cotton fee and Rs 1082.668 million in the head of property tax, while the remaining amount was collected in various other heads.

On this occasion, the Sindh Minister for ET&NC Mukesh Kumar Chawla directed the officers to improve their performance and provide facilities to the public. On this occasion, DG ET&NC Shoaib Ahmed Siddiqui briefed the provincial Minister for ET & NC Mukesh Kumar Chawla regarding performance of the officers. He asked him to take departmental action against those officers/officials who had failed to show good performance. Mobile import rises 14.94pc in 5 months

ISLAMABAD (APP): Import of mobile phones into the country during first five months of current fiscal year increased by 14.94 per cent as compared to same period of previous year. The import increased to $303.449 million during July-November (2017-18) from $264 million in same period of the year 2016-17. According to data released by PBS released here on Friday, on year-on-year basis, the mobile phone import witnessed a declining trend as it went down to $58.24 million in November 2017 from $65.8 million in November 2016, thus showing a decrease of 11.49 per cent. On month-on-month basis, the import increased by 6.49 per cent in November 2017 as compared to that of October 2017 in which the import of mobile phones was posted as $54.7 million. Similarly, the import of overall telecom group also increased by 14.02 per cent in July- November 2017-18 compared to same period of previous year. The telecom import during first five months of current fiscal year was recorded at $563.687 million while it was recorded $494. 397 million during July-November 2016-17.


On year-on-year and month-on-month basis, the telecom import in November 2017 decreased by 2.31 per cent and 2.71 per cent when compared to the import during November 2016 and October 2017 respectively. The telecom import increased to $113.522 million in November 2017 from $116.203 million in same month of last year and $116.69 million in October 2017.

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