Proposed policy aims at expansion of auto industry in Pakistan: Tarin

Web DeskWeb Editor

29th Jul, 2021. 09:45 pm

ISLAMABAD: The proposed Auto Industry Development and Export Policy (AIDEP) aims at expansion of the auto industry in Pakistan by increasing the production of cars, motorcycles, tractors, etc, a senior government official said on Thursday.

Presiding over the meeting to review the draft Auto Industry Development and Export Policy 2021/26, Federal Minister for Finance and Revenue Shaukat Tarin said that the top most priority is to ensure consumer welfare through availability of cars at affordable rates for the middle and lower income groups.

With this end in view, the government has provided major relief to the consumers by reducing the sales tax on 850cc cars along with the exemption from the value-added tax in the Federal Budget 2021/22, he added.

The Ministry of Industries and Production confirmed that the prices of vehicles have been reduced commensurate with the reduction in taxes and the industry has widely advertised for the information of the general public.

The policy would encourage exports of vehicles and automobile parts, the finance minister said and underscored the importance of electric vehicles and affirmed to provide incentives for developing electric vehicles market in Pakistan, including its charging infrastructure.

The promotion of electric vehicles will reduce dependence on the oil import bill and promote environment-friendly options, he said, and stressed to come up with innovative products for the provision of car financing at reduced mark-up to consumers so that everyone can afford a car at flexible terms and conditions.

Federal Minister for Industries and Production Khusro Bakhtiar, Adviser to the Prime Minister on Commerce Abdul Razak Dawood, Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Finance and Revenue Dr Waqar Masood, Finance Division, Commerce, Ministry of Industries and Production secretaries, the Federal Board of Revenue chairman and other senior officials participated in the meeting.

The industries secretary briefed the participants about the salient features of the draft AIDEP 2021/26.

The vision of the Auto Industry Development and Export Policy would be to make Pakistan a hub for competitive manufacturing of auto-parts and vehicles for the local markets, as well as for exports.

The key focus is to strengthen the competition within the locally-manufactured vehicles to provide high quality vehicles at affordable rates to the consumers in the country, he said.

It also includes an increase in exports of automobile parts and vehicles to earn a valuable foreign exchange, the secretary added.

The industries minister said that the new entrants may be encouraged in the auto sector, particularly for electric vehicles. This, in turn, would encourage the auto companies to invest in related infrastructure in Pakistan.

Adviser on Commerce Dawood said that the existing tariff structure needs to be rationalised in a phased manner to promote the auto industry in the country, keeping in view the objective of localisation, i.e., to encourage local auto industry to come-up with high quality vehicles within affordable range.

Finance Minister Tarin emphasised broad-based consultation with key stakeholders on board to come up with an all-encompassing and futuristic auto policy.

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