ICCI new President for focusing on SMEs to revive economy

ISLAMABAD: Sheikh Aamir Waheed has formally taken over charge as President, Mohammad Naveed as Senior Vice President and Nisar Ahmed Mirza as Vice President, Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry for the year 2017-18 in a handing over/taking over ceremony held at ICCI.

Speaking at the occasion, Sheikh Aamir Waheed said SMEs were considered as the engine of economic growth for any country and government should focus on SMEs. He said that SME policy was lastly reviewed in 2007 and for revival of economy, SME sector must be supported with business friendly SME policy. He said that the government should take concrete measures for resolving key issues of SMEs that would help in achieving sustainable economic growth.

He said that realizing the importance of SMEs, the USA and European countries have developed various policies and institutions to facilitate the growth of SMEs. He said some of the developing countries including China, Taiwan, India and Philippines have also taken steps to create enabling environment for SMEs and Pakistan should follow the same strategy and take policy measures to enhance the role of SMEs in the economic growth.

He also stressed that SMEDA should consider gender angle while reviewing SME policy because women represent 50% population of the country. He assured the business community that he would work hard for highlighting the major problems of trade, industry and services sector and get them resolved by taking up with relevant forums.

Mohammad Naveed, Senior Vice President and Nisar Ahmed Mirza, Vice President ICCI said that SME sector was the backbone of Pakistan’s economy in terms of its contribution to the GDP, employment generations and export development and emphasized that government should support in resolving major problems of SMEs on priority basis.

They said that about 90 percent of the country’s enterprises were in SME sector, but were getting small portion of the total private sector credit, which was a major constraint for their growth. They urged that government should provide SMEs easy access to finance and ease out the conditions of collaterals in order to help facilitate startups and SMEs development.