Lahore (Nut Desk)
Progressive Group in the Lahore Chamber of Commerce & Industry has called for establishing an “Export Raw Material Authority” in the country to promote such industries and sectors which can produce raw materials for export-oriented industries.
Group’s central leader and LCCI Executive Committee member Muhammad Ejaz Tanveer in a statement issued here Tuesday said an authority could help in the efficient management of a country’s natural resources. By regulating and controlling the raw materials, the authority could ensure that these resources were not depleted too quickly or unsustainably exploited. An authority could encourage or mandate the processing of raw materials within the country before export. This could lead to the creation of more value-added products, which could fetch higher prices in the international market and create jobs domestically, he added. He proposed that the government should extend a 10-year tax exemption to the industries producing raw materials for the export-oriented sectors.
Similarly, these industries or sectors should be given loans on a priority basis and against low mark-up. Such units should also be given a one-time duty exemption on import of machinery of their use, while for setting up factories plots should also be given on 10-years easy installment. Ejaz was of the view that this way government could generate revenue by imposing export taxes or royalties on the export of raw materials. This revenue could be used for public services, infrastructure development, or other national priorities. He went on to say that such an authority could develop long-term strategic plans for the sustainable development of raw material industries. It could help identify potential markets, technologies, and investments needed to enhance the value of these materials.
The authority could enforce quality standards for raw materials. This could improve the reputation of the country’s products in the global market and lead to higher demand. He said that the authority could also implement policies and regulations to ensure that the extraction of raw materials was done in an environmentally sustainable manner. This could help protect natural ecosystems and prevent ecological damage. However, he stressed that the success of an Export Raw Material Authority depends on effective governance, transparency, and a clear understanding of the country’s economic goals and priorities.
Additionally, it should be designed and implemented in a way that minimizes bureaucracy and corruption while maximizing the benefits for the country and its citizens, Ejaz concluded.