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ISLAMABAD, May 7: The government has decided to establish a metal products production line to help produce state-of-the art metal products to boost exports.

Official sources told Dawn here on Monday that metal products used in automobile, textile machinery, tractors, trucks, cookware, sanitary fittings, valves and other similar products will be manufactured as per international standard under the new project to be set up at Daska, Punjab.

The federal government will provide special Rs500m funding for the project.

The local engineering industry has failed to achieve the target set for deletion of import parts as the metal industry was unable to manufacture quality products due to use of out-dated techniques. This can be greatly improved through use of state-of-the art techniques and equipment.

The metal products production line has been proposed by utilising and sharing trained manpower, product design, development and other infrastructure facilities to be set up for both import substitution and export promotion by introducing high quality metal products in the international market.

The production line will also help the local industry to assimilate new technologies.

It was stated that local manufacturing industry lacks modern production (forging and precision casting) facilities due to lacking intensive initial investment in this area.

There will be quality assistance for non-destructive testing according to international requirements.

As Pakistan is in the process of enhancing its exports, it is apparent that the country should concentrate on engineering sector and on its metal industry to enhance its exports through production of value-added high quality metal products.

The establishment of multipurpose manufacturing facilities can play a vital role in promotion of metal products exports. Development of these facilities for manufacturing ferrous and non-ferrous (wrought and cast) components would be utilised by local industries and markets and a lot of foreign exchange would be saved.

"Most of our local small and medium industries are not equipped with modern manufacturing techniques and equipment," says a document submitted to the Planning Commission by the Ministry of Science and Technology which is the sponsoring agency for the project.

The establishment of this project for production of metal products would be very useful for both import and export purposes.

The establishment of metal products production line would also act as a modal project for other local and foreign investors to execute such activities in this sector.

Manufacturing industry is a key to development of a country. However, selection of engineering material and manufacturing processes, especially for auto industries, sanitary fittings, gas pipeline fitting, valves, textile parts and their value-added metal products must conform to standard specifications with highest degree of quality.

Without possessing the multiple manufacturing processes and techniques, commercial manufacturing cannot take part in the national endeavour for attainment of self-reliance in the field of quality metal products for import substitution and export of various metal products.