GOVT TO PROMOTE INNOVATION IN INDUSTRIES TO MAKE THEM COMPETITIVE: FAWAD

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Islamabad, APR 13 (DNA) – Chaudhry Fawad , Federal Minister for Science and Technology said that the government would promote innovation in industries for improving their competitiveness in national and international markets. He said this while exchanging views with a delegation of Islamabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry that called on him led by Sardar Yasir Ilyas Khan, President. Fatma Azim Senior Vice President, Abdul Rehman Khan Vice President ICCI, Omais Khattak, Umar Hussain and Rana Qaisar Shehzad Executive Members ICCI were in the delegation.

Chaudhry Fawad said that the Pakistan Council for Science & Technology (PCST) has been tasked to carry out the First Industrial National Innovation Survey (FINIS) to identify the factors hampering the innovations in industries and take remedial measures to encourage industries for undertaking innovation activities that would enhance their competitiveness and promote exports.

He said that MoST was working to encourage indigenous production of solar panels to shift gradually to solar energy that was more cost effective. He said that the government was considering fixing computer chips on flour bags to monitor the movement of flour in the country and to overcome its shortage created by vested interests.

He assured that his ministry would cooperate in resolving industrial problems and promoting industrial efficiency in local industrial units. He also briefed that delegation about the various projects of his ministry for technological development of the country including certification incentive program for SMEs.

Speaking at the occasion, Sardar Yasir Ilyas Khan, President, Islamabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry (ICCI) briefed the federal minister about the key issues of the local industrial and sought remedial measures to address them.

He said that pharmaceuticals, steel, marble, flour, soap & chemicals, IT and light engineering were the major industries working in the federal capital and they needed the cooperation and support of the government in upgrading technology and machinery for producing innovative and value added products. He said that the government should abolish taxes and duties in the forthcoming budget on the import of industrial technology & machinery to facilitate upgradation of domestic industry. He said that most of these industries were relying on imported raw material for manufacturing of finished products, but due to restrictions caused by Covid-19 pandemic and hefty devaluation of rupee, the cost of imported raw material has increased significantly. He highlighted the need for developing indigenous raw material producing industry in the country that would help in producing competitive products and improving exports.

Sardar Yasir Ilyas Khan said that ICCI was working for the establishment of a new industrial estate in the region and urged that the government should extend all possible support for realization of this important project.

Fatma Azim Senior Vice President, Abdul Rehman Khan Vice President ICCI and other members of ICCI delegation also highlighted the various issues of the local industry and emphasized that the government should take measures to address them for accelerating the pace of industrialization in the region.=DNA

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