Ministry seeks plan to rationalise tariffs

Updated 28 Jul 2020

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Dawood said that tariff rationalisation is vital for export-led industrialisation in Pakistan and discussions should start with the relevant stakeholders from next month. — APP/File
Dawood said that tariff rationalisation is vital for export-led industrialisation in Pakistan and discussions should start with the relevant stakeholders from next month. — APP/File

ISLAMABAD: The Ministry of Commerce has asked Tariff Policy Centre to work out tariff rationalisation roadmap for reducing the burden of excessive protection available to a few sectors to pass on the benefit to end consumers.

A high-level meeting chaired by Commerce Adviser Abdul Razak Dawood has asked the TPC to prepare a three-year plan for selected sectors — iron and steel, plastics, engineering, pharmaceuticals, chemicals and textile.

An official announcement issued here said the adviser directed TPC of National Tariff Commission to conduct detailed studies and suggest three-year roadmap for these sectors.

In order to formulate the tariff plan, the NTC will first identify the complete value chains along with potential stakeholders, then collect data from the primary and secondary sources and confirm them from chambers and associations as well as conduct public hearings.

The proposed three-year plan will then be submitted to Tariff Policy Board for approval and inclusion in the annual budget.

Dawood said that tariff rationalisation is vital for export-led industrialisation in Pakistan and discussions should start with the relevant stakeholders from next month to develop the roadmap in this regard.

The TPB has implemented a reduction of duties on around 2,000 tariff lines, comprising basic raw materials and intermediates goods.

According to the adviser, tariff rationalization will improve the competitiveness of domestic industry – including the exports sector — through duty-free access to imported raw materials and intermediate goods, which will eventually increase employment opportunity in the country by attracting investment in manufacturing.

He underlined that the stakeholder consultation process should lead to a constructive plan to develop a export-led ‘Make in Pakistan’ programme.

Published in Dawn, July 28th, 2020