LAHORE - The Pakistan fan industry producing more than two million fans annually has a strong potential of competing against international brands besides it can beat India in the Indian market if the trade is opened with the neighbouring country, it was stated by the Government College University Lahore economists on Thursday while unveiling a research report on the plight and strengths of Fan Industry in Pakistan. The owners and managers of the fan industry besides research experts from Higher Education Commission (HEC), academia, financial services and SME development attended the report launching ceremony. The three year research conducted under the supervision of GCU Vice Chancellor Dr Khalid Aftab and in collaboration with Strathclyde University, Glasgow, UK is the output of the HEC-British Council Higher Education Link Programme. The report also highlights the dynamics of small, medium and large enterprises. The research report prepared by GCU assistant professors Uzair Ahsan and Aqeel Imtiaz Wahga says the local industry produced over 17.1m fans in 2008. However, the production was only 7.1 million in 2000. The increasing trend can be attributed to increase in population, access to electricity, weather condition and fast growing construction sector across the world. About 80 percent fan manufacturers believed that there is more room for investment in this sector. The report recommended that there is a need for establishing common centres like quality testing labs and business advice centre. It states that special incentives be given to manufacturers for exploring the international market even further. The research report proposes that the small and medium enterprises require technical up gradation. They are using out dated manufacturing plants which consumes more electricity. They also lack trained and skill labour which has the knowledge of modern techniques. However, speaking at the ceremony, Taranum Fans CEO Mr Asalm said that the small and medium enterprises cannot afford to hire engineers. He demanded that the government should provide training to their workers at their factories so that their work is not affected. He requested the GCU vice chancellor to provide them the research report on fan industry in Urdu as 95 percent of fan manufacturers do not understand English. He said that production of fans on electricity generators have increased their production cost. He said that they are producing high quality fans but they lacked export incentives and opportunities. He said that the government should buy fans from them and then sale it in the international market. Metro Group President Imtaiz Ahmed said there is a trade of fans of $5 billion in the international market annually, out of which Pakistans share is about 10 percent of it. However, he also demanded more export incentives from the government. He termed the research report extremely beneficial for Pakistan Fan Manufactures Association for expanding the business. GCU VC Dr Khalid Aftab laid a stress on developing active linkages with the industries and foreign universities for research development. He said that economic growth is sustained and smooth where industrial activities are linked with the specialisation of individual areas. He said that fan industry in Pakistan evolve without a break from craft related to technology based activities. Later, HEC Member Planning Altaf Ali Shiekh pledged more support from the Higher Education Commission for Industries-Universities linkages.