Govt is working on National Tariff Policy for coming five years

Lahore – The government is working on the National Tariff Policy for the coming five years as part of the Strategic Trade Policy Framework (STPF) 2018-23 for reviewing tariff lines to enhance country’s trade.

The tariff policy draft recommends a gradual reduction in the duty on raw material and machinery imports for export-oriented industries and further tariff slabs are proposed to be fixed at 5 percent, 10 percent,15 percent and 20 percent, senior official of Ministry of Commerce told APP here on Wednesday.

He said the commerce division is formulating the STPF 2018-23, which will give strategic direction to the export sector for the coming five years and the new tariff policy will be an integral part of the upcoming STPF.

Replying to a question, he said the government would implement its trade policy after a thorough appraisal according to modern trends and Strategic policy framework 2018-23 with an aim to substantially boost the country’s exports.

The official said Pakistan is committed to diversify its exports and reach new trade destinations in different regions of the world including, South American, Africa and South East Asia.

He further said that Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with different countries including Turkey, China and Thailand were under negotiation phase.

While talking on second phase of Pak-China FTA, he said China had agreed to provide market access to 70 items, shared by Pakistan besides providing concession on all items included in the offer list.

He added that coming round of negotiation with China under 2nd phase of FTA would held in October, 2018 in Islamabad.

Replying to another question, he said that Pakistan would get benefits of $ 200 million after signing the FTA with Thailand and also enhancing the trade volume between both nations.

The official said that Pakistan and Thailand would present their complete final list of FTA)in coming round of negotiation at the end of October, 2018 for increasing trade liberalization between both the countries.

Both sides had exchanged the final offer lists of items for free trade, including automobile and textile sectors in order to remove the reservations of both sectors, Pakistan wants concession on 110 products on textiles, agro-products, plastic and Pharmaceuticals as same Thailand granted to other FTA partners in these products, he said.

Replying to another question, he said that Pakistan and Indonesia have finalized the review process for the bilateral preferential trade agreement that is likely to enhance local exports to the South East Asian country by $210 million a year.

Currently, Pakistan and Indonesia have annual bilateral trade volume of $180 million, which was expected to increase to $370 million after renegotiation on the preferential trade agreement between the two countries, he said.

"Monitoring Desk"

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