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Prime Minister Imran Khan to unveil SME Policy on November 11 - Government & Private Jobs in Pakistan

Prime Minister Imran Khan to unveil SME Policy on November 11

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LAHORE: Prime Minister Imran Khan will announce the SME Policy on November 11, 2021, an official said on Saturday.

Speaking at a meeting at the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI), Small and Medium Enterprises Development Authority (Smeda) chief executive officer (CEO) Hashim Raza said that the policy has been formed after due consultation with the stakeholders.

LCCI president Mian Nauman Kabir, senior vice president Mian Rehman Aziz Chan and the vice president also spoke on the occasion.
The Smeda CEO said a separate section has been introduced in the policy to support women entrepreneurs. The regulatory regime has been eased, while the SMEs would have to get only a few no objection certificates.

“Others have been abolished in the upcoming policy. [The] government departments will be bound to issue NOCs within 30 days. Social Security, Labour, Punjab Food Authority and EPA officials cannot visit [the] SMEs for inspection without schedule and prior approval,” he said.

The lack of access to the financing was the biggest challenge for the SMEs, he said, adding that that the lack of documentation and awareness were the major issues of the SME sector.

Sharing findings of a survey carried out by Smeda, he said 78 per cent of the SMEs could not avail bank finance facility due to the lack of awareness and lengthy process.

Raza said that the only solution to the economic challenges was to promote and support the SMEs. “We have to increase our production base and labour capacity,” he said.

Smeda was ready to collaborate with the LCCI for the establishment of an incubation centre for the young entrepreneurs and business starters.

Mian Nauman Kabir said that the SMEs contribution to the GDP was around 40 per cent.

“There are over 5 million SMEs in Pakistan and of these around 65 per cent are based in Punjab,” he said.

“[The] LCCI has highlighted the importance of providing technical trainings to the individuals associated with the SME sector,” Kabir said, adding that the steps should be taken to provide training to the SMEs in the emerging areas of productivity improvement, quality assurance, cost reduction and energy efficiency.

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