The government will formulate small and medium enterprises (SME) policy in line with prime minister’s vision to promote cross-sectoral small and medium scale industries to generate employment and enhance capacity of export-oriented enterprises, said Industries Minister Makhdoom Khusro Bakhtiar.

Speaking at a consultative session with stakeholders from the SME sector on Saturday, the minister noted that the proposed SME policy would augment growth of women-owned businesses, entrepreneurship, pharmaceuticals, IT enabled and farm services in the country.

“It will also support entrepreneurs to explore local and international market opportunities,” he announced. “The government will ease credit facilities and services for small and medium sized industries and encourage them to participate in public procurements.”

The minister reaffirmed that the Ministry of Industries and Production, in collaboration with the Small and Medium Enterprise Development Authority (Smeda), would continue to engage all stakeholders in the process of formulating a comprehensive policy for the SME sector.

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During the session, stakeholders from the SME sector commended the government of Pakistan for prioritising the promotion of SMEs and placing it on the national economic agenda.

The businessmen and industrialists lauded the incumbent government for relaxing the terms of taxes and approving action plans for SMEs to promote ease of doing business in the country.

The purpose of the meeting was to enhance cross-sectoral participation and foster dialogue with SME stakeholders in the policy-making process. The meeting also reflected on the recommendations from stakeholders pertaining to the upcoming national SME policy.

The gathering discussed the policy in view of financial incentives, taxation systems, and regulatory simplification for SMEs of the country.

Published in The Express Tribune, September 19th, 2021.

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