Karachi, September 22, 2023 (PPI-OT): Sohail Rajput, Secretary - Board of Investment (BoI), and Zulfiqar Ali, Director General (Policy, Legal and Reforms Wing) and Project Director SMART - BoI, visited the Chamber on September 18, 2023. The meeting revolved around gaining OICCI’s perspective about ease of doing business in Pakistan and how BoI can increase investment opportunities Pakistan has to offer. The esteemed guests were welcomed by M. Abdul Aleem, CE/Secretary General - OICCI, and Kashif Shai, Executive Director - OICCI. The meeting was attended by Muhammad Ibadullah, CFO - Indus Motors Company, Farhan Akram, CFO - Dawlance, Hasham Ali Babar, CFO - GSK, Sumera Naveed, Director Corporate Affairs and Administration - GSK, Faheem Abbas, CFO Chevron, and Jawaid Siddiqui, Financial Controller and Company Secretary - Dupont, Aman Ghanchi, Company Secretary - Unilever, and Ayesha Tammy Haq, Executive Director - Pharma Bureau.
Abdul Aleem shared a detailed presentation which included OICCI’s brief profile, a snapshot of the member’s contribution to the economy, the role of the Chamber in facilitating FDI in the country, and research studies done by the chamber. He also briefed the BoI delegation on OICCI’s ongoing partnership with McKinsey and how it plays out into improving the FDI flowing into the country. The results of the Business Confidence Index Wave 23, which showed a significant decline in confidence levels along with the driving factors were also presented.
The results of the recently conducted Regulatory Survey shared members’ concerns which highlighted an over-regulated environment hindering Ease of Doing Business. The primary regulators under discussion were DRAP covered by Ayesha Tammy Haq, FBR covered by Aman Ghanchi, OGRA, SBP, PTA/MoITT, and Directorate General Petroleum Concessions.
The meeting covered how BoI could potentially partner with OICCI which included the following steps:
Appoint senior - level focal person for resolution of OICCI member’s issues: build confidence in investors that BOI is effective
OICCI to be part of BOI BOD and bodies like SIFC
Regular engagements (monthly/ quarterly meetings) that are beyond tick in the box.
BOI to be the voice of foreign investors in Government corridors, especially in arranging regular audience with PM/Chief Executive
Help reduce number of Regulators, and regulations - e.g. Leading trans-national FMs need to deal with nearly 70 regulatory bodies/ regulations
Lack of harmonization/conflicts between Federal and Provincial Legislations - huge disparity among provinces - taxation, food standards etc.
Additionally, it also highlighted steps OICCI members feel can be taken to promote Pakistan:
Build Pakistan brand as an investment destination - branding campaigns to portray positive perception and potential of Pakistan.
Enhance role of Pakistani diplomats and Trade officers stationed abroad
Quarterly global press engagement by PM addressing the negative perception/concerns about Pakistan
Organize meeting of PM with Global CEOs (for e.g. Apple, Google, Amazon, Microsoft, etc.)
Investment Promotional and Ease of Doing Business Reforms (No visible impact of current efforts)
Help Desk - BOI/Provincial BOI should have designated Relationship Managers to facilitate investors with proper facilitation desks
Public/Private Council for periodic review of EODB parameters
Sohail Rajput appreciated OICCI’s efforts in sharing a holistic and objective view of the business environment in Pakistan with their in-depth analysis of the current economic situation. Particularly, he acknowledged that BoI could improve their role through increased engagement and interactions with existing foreign investors and appreciated OICCI’s key insights and in-depth understanding of the complexities of Pakistan’s economic and investment landscape.
For more information, contact:
Overseas Investors Chamber of Commerce and Industry (OICCI)
Chamber of Commerce Building, Talpur Road, P.O. Box 4833,
Karachi - 74000, Pakistan
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