TRADE

 

Dec 23 - 29 , 2002

 

1.INTERNATIONAL

2. INDUSTRY

3. FINANCE

4. POLICY

5. TRADE

6. GULF

 

EXPORTS MAY SURPASS $10.4BN TARGET: EPB

A jump of about 16 per cent in export earnings in last five months has given tremendous hope and optimism to the export planners and exporters who now expect to far exceed $10.4 billion target fixed for the current fiscal year and go beyond $11 billion by June next.

 

"Yes, we are reviewing our export performance in last five months and are in process of drawing up a new strategy to consolidate on our gains," a happy Chairman of Export Promotion Bureau Tariq Ikram told this correspondent by telephone on Monday.

The EPB Chairman was confident of surpassing $10.4 billion export target by June next but he was cautious and reluctant in indicating whether the export earnings will touch $11 billion during the current fiscal year.

A double digit billion dollar export earnings in any single year has remained a dream for all the governments in last ten years. Malik Naeem, the Commerce Minister in Nawaz Sharif's first government wanted to achieve this target by 1993. But for last five years Pakistan's exports stagnated around 8 to 9 billion dollars.

Exporters are now confident of touching 11 billion dollars export by June next. But all of them attach a big if to this prospect. There is a lurking fear that Iraq-US standoff may flare up and put the whole Gulf region and world economy into turmoil. There are apprehensions about the domestic political stability. Any disturbance could derail the economy and exports could be severely affected.

Tariq Ikram disclosed that the bureau is preparing a long term export development plan for the US and China. With the US, the plan will take care of the textile export quota items particularly those in which desired level headway is not being made. Non-quota items are also being identified and efforts will be made to market these items in the US market on sustainable basis.

$133.38/TON HIGHEST BID FOR WHEAT EXPORT

Trading Corporation of Pakistan (TCP) on Monday received the highest bid price of $133.38 per ton for export of "Pakpunjab" wheat quality of 2002 crop against its benchmark price of $130 per ton.

The bid, offered by Peter Cremer of Singapore, is the highest ever price the Pakistani wheat received through tender and could be seen as a trendsetter for future bid prices.

The state-owned corporation had invited offers from prospective exporters for 50,000 tons of "Pakpunjab" wheat of Punjab food department (crop 2002). The corporation had fixed a benchmark

price of $130 per ton. However, the highest bidder has established their bid for 31,000 tons, which according to TCP sources, would be awarded without calling a meeting of price evaluation committee.

In reply to a query, the sources said as the bid was over the fixed benchmark price, therefore, the question to evaluate the bid price did not arise.

LEATHER, MADE-UPS EXPORTS FALL

Export of leather and leather goods registered a steep fall of around 33 per cent during the month of November 2002, thereby extending the declining trend which gripped the industry's exports since the 9/11 incidents.

According to official figures export of leather and leather made-ups during the month stood at $120.075 million compared to $179.990 million in the corresponding period last year.

Similarly, in October 2002 exports declined by 18.30 per cent at $165.140 million as against $202.130 million in the same month last year. In September 2002, the fall was at 13.35 per cent at $181.220 million compared to $209.140 million in the corresponding period last year.

EU OFFERS QUOTA, DUTY-FREE ACCESS

The European Union (EU) has decided to offer "duty free and quota free access" for all agricultural exports from the World's poorest countries.

It also decided that rich countries will give access at zero duty to at least 50 per cent of their imports from developing countries, and a "food security box" including measures to facilitate development and preserve key food security crops through a special safeguard.

These decisions were taken by the EU at Brussels, the details of which were released by the EU local office. It was proposed that the new commitments be implemented over six years for developed countries and ten years for developing countries commencing in the year 2006.

REGISTER UNDER DTRE

The tax authorities have asked businessmen dealing in leather exports to register themselves under Duty and Tax Remission for Export (DTRE) scheme.

EC BEGINS DUMPING PROCEEDINGS

The European Commission (EC) has started anti-dumping proceedings against bedlinen imports from Pakistan. The proceedings have been initiated on the complaint lodged by the Committee of the Cotton and Allied Textile Industries of European Community (Eurocoton).

The Eurocoton in its complaint has alleged that imports of bedlinen from Pakistan are being dumped and thereby causing material injury to the European textile industry.

BAN ON EXPORT OF LIVESTOCK DEMANDED

The leather industry has appealed to the government to impose ban on export of livestock till such time exporters or companies do not set up their own breeding farms.

The tanning and leather made-up industry is presently faced with acute shortage of hides and skins, which are badly affecting their exports because of higher prices in domestic market.

TEXTILE EXPORTS

A 16.5 per cent increase in export of textile products in last five months has not brought much joy to Pakistan's fabulously rich textile tycoons who now blame dwindling international prices, sinking dollar and rising utilities cost for giving them very poor return in business.