Fostering Business to business (B2B) investments main thrust of second phase of CPEC, WealthPK reported on Saturday. The second phase of CPEC especially focuses on industrial organisation through B2B investments. In this regard, the Board of Investment (BoI) is also encouraging fostering the B2B enterprises in Pakistan.
The BoI is a member of the CPEC’s Working Group on Industrial Parks in Special Economic Zones (SEZs). It is in the process of identifying suitable and viable locations for consideration by the Joint Working Group (JWG) for setting up SEZs, WealthPK reported.
The BoI has already identified possible sites for setting up the SEZs along the corridor in all the four provinces of Pakistan, and the Gilgit-Baltistan in consultation with stakeholders. Each economic zone will focus on unique goods and services based on the availability of local raw materials, manpower, and other considerations.
The creation of these zones will attract domestic and foreign investment, as well as create job opportunities.
A CPEC industrial cooperation and B2B investment conference organised by the BoI in Lahore recently was also part of the efforts to promote B2B ventures.
The goals were to promote CPEC-related SEZs, facilitate public-private partnership (PPP), initiate successful B2B ventures, and showcase the Punjab province’s public-sector achievements.
It is pertinent to mention here that a total of nine SEZs are to be built under the CPEC. Work on three of them, including Allama Iqbal Industrial City in Punjab, Rashakai SEZ in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, and Dhabeji SEZ in Sindh, is nearing completion.
These SEZs have been offered enticing fiscal advantages, including a 10-year tax holiday and customs duty exemption on capital goods imports for both the developer and the SEZs’ tenants.
These special economic zones are being established under a special law to tackle the global competitiveness issues and with a view to attracting foreign direct investment (FDI).
The legislation provides for creation of an industrial cluster with liberal incentives, infrastructure, and investor facilitation services in order to increase productivity and lower the cost of doing business in order to promote economic growth and reduce poverty.
The legislation also provides for doing away with the procedural complexities which usually mar speedy and smooth establishment of enterprises.
The SEZ policy offers a comprehensive framework for fostering a favourable business climate conducive to FDI. It focuses on liberalisation, deregulation, privatisation and facilitation.