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Country is not benefiting from trade officers

Islamabad, November 21, 2022 (PPI-OT):The Pakistan Economy Watch (PEW) on Saturday said the government is spending billions of rupees on the trade officers posted in other countries but to no avail. The main purpose of trade officers is to increase exports which cannot be realized and the country is not getting any benefit, it said. Trade officers receive hefty salaries and benefits but do not perform their duties honestly therefore their burden on the national exchequer should be reduced, said Dr. Murtaza Mughal, President of PEW.

He said that if these people were doing their work, the country’s exports would not have been in this state. Dr. Murtaza Mughal said that according to IMF data, Pakistan’s exports were equal to fifteen percent of GDP during 2000, which has now fallen to eleven percent of GDP.

Frome1990 to 2020 there has been a 40% decline in Pakistan’s share in global trade but these officers have never been questioned about the decline in exports, nor is there any system of accountability for them, he observed. He said that the exports are going down but the majority of the trade officers posted abroad are still busy reaping the benefits.

What is the justification for deputing these officers abroad and spending two billion rupees annually on their salaries and perks when the exports are not increasing but decreasing, he questioned? Dr Mughal said that after the coronavirus pandemic, the trend of online meetings and social media for business-related matters has increased a lot and in such a situation, the services of these officers have become unnecessary, so these unnecessary posts should be abolished and the surplus capital should be used for some constructive purpose.

There is no accountability mechanism for trade officers and there is a need to seek clarification from the Ministry of Commerce in this regard, he demanded. He said that when the internet was not common, trade officers were needed but now there is no such compulsion therefore tough decision should be taken to send them packing.

For more information, contact:
Pakistan Economy Watch (PEW)
402, 4th Floor, Gulistan Khan House, Fazal-e-Haq Road,
82-East, Blue Area, Islamabad
Tel: +92-51-2510375
Fax: +92-51-2802449
Cell: +92-321-5157671
Email: president@pakistaneconomywatch.com
Web: www.pakistaneconomywatch.com