ISLAMABAD-Advisor to the Prime Minister on Commerce and Investment Abdul Razak Dawood on Wednesday said there is a lot of potential for transshipment in Pakistan, which can be exploited with the right policies and government support.

He made these remarks while chairing a meeting/presentation to discuss “Transshipment Potential of Pakistan” at the Ministry of Commerce Islamabad. The meeting was attended by the senior officers of the Ministry of Commerce, Ministry of Maritime Affairs, Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) and other stakeholders.

In the presentation, a detailed overview of transshipment sector in Pakistan and overall general outlook of the transhipment in the world were discussed. Pointing out the issues pertaining to port operations in Pakistan, Abdul Razak Dawood underscored that port charges and inefficiencies resulting in more time in cargo handling, are the major issues that need to be resolved to improve the operations. He added that the government can play a role of a facilitative regulator, providing a flexible environment to boost the transshipment industry as per the available potential.

Talking about the importance of strategic location of Pakistan, the Advisor stated that Gwadar port can act as a sister port to a number of other important ports in the region, which can complement each other in transshipment activities. Dawood further emphasized that Pakistan can reach its true potential of transshipment when China, Afghanistan and other Central Asian Economies are connected with Gwadar through land routes.

Considering different policy recommendations, Razak Dawood noted that a little value addition can be beneficial in promoting and improving the transshipment industry. He asked the stakeholders to consider the recommendations and resolve the identified issues for the benefit of ports and shipping industry in Pakistan.

In the meeting, various steps for maximizing Pakistan’s transshipment potential were also discussed. It was emphasized that by streamlining the government procedures and by implementing the TIR Convention, there can be tremendous benefits to the economy of Pakistan.