Small traders have demanded upgradation of ports in Pakistan to improve maritime trade, reduce cost of imports and exports, reap benefits of Pak-China Economic Corridor and streamline LNG imports.

Ports should see major transformation Pakistan cannot handle the huge LNG vessels of QatarGas called Q-Max and Q-Flex therefore country has to get small ships from other companies which increase the cost, said Patron Islamabad Chamber of Small Traders Shahid Rasheed Butt. QatarGas continued to press Pakistan since long to deepen the ports to accommodate big vessels but to no avail for which port authorities are responsible, he said. Shahid Rasheed Butt said that country is passing through challenges while economy is under pressure due to various reasons including congestion of ports which remains one of the main hurdles to growth.

Extra resources for development of ports must be allocated on preferential basis which are handling 90 per cent of the nation’s external trade.