Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry has welcomed the start of Chinese trade convoys to Pakistan which arrived at Grawadr through the western route of China-Pakistan
Economic Corridor (CPEC).
The convoy is carrying Chinese goods for export to the Middle East and Africa and termed it a positive development for the economy of the country. President, Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry Khalid Iqbal Malik said that CPEC was considered a game-changer for Pakistan as it would create opportunities for progress and prosperity in the region, especially for Balochistan.
He said CEPC would make Gwadar a hub of trade activities and help in removing poverty from this less developed area by creating many new jobs for the local people. However, he stressed upon the government to make sure that the concessions given to foreign companies under CPEC and free-trade agreements with various countries would not hurt the local industry.
He said CPEC would only be beneficial for Pakistan if the country`s exports were boosted through this mega trade route. He said that the Chinese industry has achieved the economies of scale due to many factors including industry-friendly policies and multiple incentives of the Chinese government and huge domestic market. He urged the government for providing support to the local industry in its efforts for upgrading technology and machinery which will enable it to come at part with Chinese counterparts for entering into effective joint ventures and partnerships in CPEC projects.
Khalid Iqbal Malik called upon the FBR and National Tariff Commission to take strong measures against any unfair trade that would safeguard the interests of indigenous industry. He said steps should be taken to address the issues of under invoicing on Chinese imports.
He urged the government for ensuring protection of local industry interests while opening its borders to other countries and finalizing free trade agreements.