Export Policy Order
Strategic trade policy Framework 2012-15 Speech:
Ladies & gentlemen,
It is a matter of privilege for me to present the second strategic trade policy framework (STPF) for the next three-year period, 2012-15. The present democratic government took the initiative to launch a three-year strategic trade policy framework in 2009 instead of annual trade policies to address the concerns of our business community as well as our trading partners on frequent policy shifts – termed as S.R.O. culture. This initiative has served the purpose of giving a medium-term outlook to our policy regime.
Carrying this initiative forward, we are now launching the second Strategic Trade Policy Framework, for the period 2012-15.
During the past three years, the business climate of the country has unfortunately been affected by the security situation prevalent in the region. Energy deficit, law and order situation and devastating floods in 2010 and 2011 have also added to the problems being faced by our industry. However, our economy has shown strength in the face of these challenges and has continued to grow at a steady rate.
Despite various challenges faced by the economy, our trade has shown consistent improvement. Our exports increased by 27 percent in the year 2010-11 and touched a record level of us $ 24.8 billion. There was a slight fall of 4.7 percent in exports during 2011-12, due to the global financial crisis and lower prices of cotton in the international market.
Textile still remains the mainstay of our exports. However, focused efforts by the Ministry of Commerce for diversification of our export basket and markets have yielded positive results and the share of the non-textile sector has risen from 36.5 percent of our total exports in 2006-07 to 48 percent in 2011-12. Similarly, we have also been successful to a reasonable degree in the diversification of our export markets with a gradually increasing quantum of our exports now going to markets in Asia and Africa. Importantly Afghanistan has emerged as a major trading partner and has become our third largest export market.
Ladies & gentlemen,
Given the in-elasticity of our import basket, the only viable option available with the government to address the issue of trade deficit is to put a higher level of effort for increasing our exports. It is in this perspective that we have formulated the strategic trade policy framework for 2012-15.
The strategic trade policy framework sets out policy guidelines and identifies principal areas of action to strengthen different aspects of Pakistan’s export competitiveness directly or indirectly.
The major elements of STPF 2012-2015 are:
i. Focus on regional trade
ii. Strengthening of the institutional framework for the promotion of exports