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Logistic reforms vital to tap region’s trade opportunities: President

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President Dr Arif Alvi on Thursday said to fully tap the trading opportunities offered by increasing regional integration, Pakistan needed to reform its logistic infrastructure besides developing human resource.

“The regional countries are eager to transport their goods to Gwadar port, and hence Pakistan needs to put in place a smooth supply-chain system at the earliest,” he said in his address here at the First Multimodal Logistics Conference 2022.

President Alvi mentioned that Uzbekistan had shown keen interest in transporting its commodities through Pakistan, while Turkmenistan and Iran were interested in the supply of natural gas.

In this regard, he said an efficient cargo system in Pakistan was vital to substantially improve the supply-chain system, thus benefiting both the producer and consumer countries.

“Pakistan has immense opportunities knocking at its doorstep and we need to take advantage with the implementation of a multimodal logistic strategy,” he said.

He mentioned that the government had done a splendid job in improving the farming, industry, and textile sectors during the pandemic, however, mentioned the need for a smooth supply chain system.  

To bridge gaps between the manufacturer and consumer, he said, the policies needed to be formulated in consultation with government functionaries and the private sector.

President Alvi said getting adjusted to changing trends, overcoming supply chain disruptions, and relying on two or more modes of transportation could substantially improve the logistics system.

He said multimodal transportation required more communication and collaboration and emphasized training the country’s huge youth bulge into a productive human resource to achieve the goals.

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Dr Ishrat Hussain, former Adviser to Prime Minister on Institutional Reforms and Austerity said inefficiency of the supply chain could be overcome through the implementation of reforms in institutions.

He mentioned that the reforms carried out in Civil Aviation Authority, Pakistan International Airlines, Pakistan Railways, and National Highway Authority were aimed at the improvement of consumer services.

To improve the efficiency of public organizations, he said it was important for the ministries to work on policies only, while the regulatory bodies could function autonomously.

He stressed a level-playing field for all stakeholders including the private sector relating to the supply chain to benefit the consumer.

Vice President Manzil Pakistan Asim Siddiqi said the non-governmental organization had been assisting the government and policy-makers on laws relating to the country’s maritime and freight potential. 

He said Pakistan eagerly needed a change in multimodal logistics in view of the growing demand such as regional connectivity and the projects under China Pakistan Economic Corridor. 

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