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A joint delegation of the Gold & Gems Art Promotion Council (GGAPC) Pakistan and Lahore Division Sarafa & Jewellers Association (LDS&JA) recently called on Chairman PM Task Force on Gems & Jewellery, Chairman Engr. Gul Asghar Khan to apprise the issues being faced by the Jewellers community across the country and get a first-hand knowledge efforts being made by the Government to promote Gems & Jewellery trade within the country and abroad.

GGAPC Pakistan President and Convener FPCCI Regional Standing Committee on Jewellers & Retailers Muhammad Ahmad led the delegation which also included Muhammad Siddique (Karachi), Rana Ijaz Ahmad, Rana Zahid Mahmood, Rana Aamir Mahmood Batalvi, Muhammad Shafiq, Muhammad Saqib Ishaq, Rana Khalid Mahmood, Seth Muhammad Arshad, Rana Muzaffar Ali, Ch. Zain Ul Hassan, Seth Muhammad Khalil Shahzada, Rana Nadeem Aleem, Muhammad Qaiser Rasheed and others.

Speaking to the delegation, Engr. Gul Asghar said setting up of a ‘National Gems & Jewellery Authority’ is on the cards to boost exports of precious stones and make it a profitable business for the jewellers.

All the rules & regulations of this authority are final and likely to be announced shortly. This authority will work in collaboration with Jewellers to boost the exports which has the potential of earning US $13 billion per annum.

Besides this ‘Jewellers Towers’ will be set up in all the major cities of the country where display centers, training centers, Jewellers shop and manufacturing facilities for Gems & Jewellery businessmen will be available. These can be constructed under Private-Public Partnership mode, exempted of tax for 10 years and source of investment from the constructor will not be asked.

Engr. Gul Asghar Khan assured the delegation that all the issues being faced by Jewellers community including taxes will be solved in consultation with them. He expressed his disappointment on SRO 760 and other such laws which were hindering the way of development of this industry.

He further disclosed that around 200 tons of gold business is done in Pakistan every year while 100 tons gold is recycled. He said setting up of ‘Gold Bank’ is also under consideration where people can deposit their ornaments and get profit in return in shape of gold.

GGAPC Pakistan President Muhammad Ahmad on this occasion proposed that the industry may be treated on equal footing with other sectors and if this is given due support, it can prove second export oriented industry after cotton. Introduction of latest mining technologies from abroad and practice them in the country for better results to avoid damages to minerals on large-scale. He called for making arrangements for availability of subsidized equipments to adopt the latest technology and to advocate and familiarize our workers with the same.

GGAPC Pakistan leaders also suggested that the facilities of provision of necessary fund from EDF may be restored as in the past. On export of gems, the exporters are paid 57 percent of the total export by banks under Refinance Scheme. It is suggested that this amount should be increased to 80 percent of the total export value. Businessmen dealing in gold and silver through banking transactions should be given Over Draft facility and bank loan should be extended for branding or setting up refinery. Return of gold confiscated by the authorities should be ensured after payment of fine as in majority of cases such gold is neither stolen nor smuggled rather it is common asset of different jewellers and its confiscation damage their business, they added.

Muhammad Ahmad also presented the 50 years story of struggle and achievement of the GGAPC Pakistan and LDS&JA. PM Task Force Chairman Engr. Gul Asghar Khan appreciated the efforts by both the organization and said that the government is encouraging such people who can make a change instead of toeing the status go and take the country to new heights of development and progress.



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