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PPE manufacturing, exports urged

Business

June 3, 2020

LAHORE: The Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) has urged the government to facilitate the manufacturing and exports of personal protective equipment (PPE), a statement said on Tuesday.

The LCCI office-bearers said, in the current scenario of economic distress, hundreds of manufacturing units related to garments, sports goods, textile, plastics and auto industry are shifting towards manufacturing PPE.

These units have added PPE as their product lines. They are providing enough products to cover local demand, and now have capacity for exports, they said.

Exports of PPE gowns, face masks and face shields can easily fetch around $1 to $2 billion, if allowed. Inaction in this regard would result in surrendering this tremendous export opportunity to India, Cambodia and Bangladesh, which has a short window to capture market share.

They said to facilitate the local industry in manufacturing PPE, they should be provided with a level-playing field. The sales tax exemption, which was granted to imports and subsequent sale of PPE through SRO 237 (I) 2020 dated March 20, 2020 should also be granted to local manufacturing.

A major obstacle in PPE manufacturing, in this emergency, is the process of registration with the Drug Regulatory Authority of Pakistan (DRAP), which takes a long time.