PTI government is speaking loud of its efforts to create a favorable atmosphere for businesspeople and investors. It is in the process of creating dedicated ease of doing business centers in all the provinces as well as in the Islamabad.
Pakistan currently ranks at number 136 out of 190 economies in the world in the global ease of doing business index and the Prime Minister has tasked his team to bring it down to under 100 in the ongoing year.
In a press conference today, Abdul Razak Dawood, Adviser on Commerce and Haroon Sharif, Chairman Board of Investment (BOI) announced three months progress on how the new team of PTI has worked hard to change the environment for doing business in the country.
“The focus of the government is the industrialization, and we are working on it which will create lots of jobs for the youth,” said Abdul Razaq Dawood.
Two of them, while briefing the media, highlighted the short term achievements and also revealed the plans. According to the government, the following is what business community has been provided with for ease of doing business in Pakistan.
Ease Of Doing Business, Short Term Gains
- Government is issuing business visas in 24 hours, and businessmen can apply for Pakistani visa online. The involvement of embassies is being minimized for speeding up the process. Currently, the option is available for four countries, but it will grow to some 60 countries in the coming months.
- Businessmen will not require to experience long immigration queues. Electronic visa holders will have their own electronic gates to pass through.
- There are no restricted areas in Pakistan. Investors can do business in Gilgit Baltistan, Azad Kashmir, and Baluchistan as well.
- Earlier, the business community had to deal with some 47 different government departments for tax payment procedure. The number has been brought down to 16 which is almost at par with India where the number is 13, and now the business community can pay taxes online. With this, physical transaction cost has been minimized in this process. FBR, EOBI, and provinces will work together in this effort to strengthen ease of doing business in Pakistan.
- Registering a new company is always a hurdle in Pakistan as one has to deal with SECP, FBR, EOBI, and the provinces. With the help of SECP, the government wants businesspeople to register companies online. With this one window process, they will be no need to deal with any other department or province separately. The registration forms can be downloaded from SECP’s website. Punjab government is also the part of the new initiative, and by March this year, the Sindh government will also work in liaison.
- Again, instead of dealing with multiple departments, Property registration for the businessmen has been eased down as well. Punjab government has integrated all the departments on its online portal.
- Getting electricity connection for the business is a cumbersome process. The new initiative has simplified it. NEPRA will now, not only mention the new tariffs for businesses on its website but also it will communicate the load-shedding schedule to the business community.
While talking about the plans, Haroon Sharif told that business loan process would become speedy and the steps are being taken so that documents can be verified electronically online.
Food processing industry in Pakistan is the center of interest for many countries including Korea, Malaysia, China who are interested in bringing technology here for the food processing. The food exports are expected to rise exponentially once the investment comes in.
Imran Khan’s personal interest to flourish tourism industry in Pakistan is another step towards foreign investment. Haroon told government was in the process of allocating lands and sites for hoteling and tourism.
PTI government has announced the progress on ease of doing business In Pakistan. It plans to open dedicated business centers for attracting investment