PPI Original Text (PPI-OT) – Government needs to adopt Small and Medium Enterprises Development as a top priority agenda: Sartaj Aziz

Lahore, May 31, 2012 (PPI-OT): The government of Pakistan needs to adopt the SME development as a top priority agenda , which should be followed up with a rigorous review of the growth strategies to ensure sustainable growth of the economy and the country with 180 million inhabitants facing challenges of being caught in a low growth trap.

It was unanimously observed by various panelists while expressing their views at the Public-Private Dialogue arranged by the Small and Medium Enterprises Development Authority (SMEDA) today on “Role of Government in SME Development in Pakistan ”.

Mr. Sartaj Aziz former federal minister and the present Vice Chancellor of Beacon House National University was Chief Guest on this occasion. Whereas, Mr. Yousaf Naseem Khokhar CEO, SMEDA opened the Dialogue through a thought provoking address of welcome.
The panelists who participated in the dialogue as private sector representatives included Mr. Sajid Naqvi, Honarary Secretary General, UNISAME, Mr. Almas Hyder, CEO, SPEL Industries, Mr. Mumshad Ali, CEO, R.K. Gears, Pvt. Ltd., Lahore, Mr. Khawar Rafiq, Rafiq Engineering Industries Pvt. Ltd, Mr. Rehmatullah Javed, Federation of Pakistan Chamber of Commerce and Industry and a representative of the women entrepreneurs.

Whereas, the panelists representing the public sector on this occasion were Mr. Liaquat Ali Dolla, Joint Registrar, Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan, Mr. Farhan Aziz Khawaja, Managing Director, Punjab Small Industries Corporation, Mr. Shahid Naseem, Director General Withholding, Federal Board of Revenue, Mr. Shahzad Hassan Rana, Director, Trade Development Authority of Pakistan, Ms. Zubaira Hassan, Head of Economics Department, Kinnaird College, Lahore and Mr. Muhammad Alamgir Chaudhary, General Manager-Outreach, SMEDA.

The panelists gave their opinions on thematic areas pre-identified by SMEDA as agenda of the dialogue. The discussion covered issues to be confronted by SMEs in access to finance, Human Recourse and Skill Development, Infrastructure and Technology up gradation, SME Definition, Regulatory Environment and SMEs penetration into international Markets.

The panelists called for a positive economic outlook and conducive business environment to lure investment and stimulate innovative activities in the economy by encouraging absorption of technology, creating competitive business environment, providing access to finance, developing a technically competent labour force and a sound infrastructure, particularly with smooth power and telecommunication facilities.

Mr. Sartaj Aziz, while addressing as Chief Guest, said that SMEs were the key to Pakistan’s prosperity and the government of Pakistan should now move beyond the initial efforts made to support SMEs.

He emphasized to build necessary infrastructure, provide business development support services and technological facilities to wide spreading SMEs in the country.

For more information, contact:
Liaqat Ali Gohar
DGM (Admin. and PR)
Small and Medium Enterprise Development Authority (SMEDA)
6th floor, LDA Plaza, Egerton Road, Lahore
Tel: 111-111-456
Fax: (042) 6304926
Email: helpdesk@smeda.org.pk
Website: www.smeda.org.pk

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