ICCI demands Furniture City in Islamabad to promote exports

ICCI stressed that the government should provide support in introducing high-tech machinery

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Islamabad (VOM): Muhammad Shakeel Munir, President, Islamabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry has called upon the government to establish a Furniture City or Furniture Zone in Islamabad to facilitate the growth of the furniture industry and promote exports of furniture products. He said Pakistan has huge potential to promote trade and exports of furniture products and the government should focus on this industry for its better growth. He said this while addressing a delegation of Furniture Association Gulra More, Islamabad that visited ICCI led by its President Farhan Khan. Zahid Hussain, Chairman All Pakistan Furniture Association, Muhammad Ejaz Abbasi former President ICCI, Muhammad Naveed Malik & Khalid Chaudhry former Senior Vice Presidents ICCI and others were present at the occasion.
Muhammad Shakeel Munir called upon the CDA to address the longstanding streetlight issue of Furniture Market as due to lack of streetlights, incidents of theft were on the rise in the market causing great concerns in the business community. He stressed that the government should cooperate with furniture sector exporters in organizing furniture expos in foreign countries that would give a boost to furniture exports. He urged that instead of confiscating any material from the furniture market, the customs officials should settle such issues with mutual negotiations to save the business activities from damaging consequences. He assured that ICCI would cooperate with the Furniture Association in resolving their key issues.
Speaking at the occasion, Farhan Khan, President, Furniture Association, Golra Road, Islamabad said that due to the absence of street lights in the furniture market, theft incidents at night were on the rise and added that ICCI should cooperate in resolving this key issue. He said that with the efforts of ICCI, the FBR had increased area of furniture businesses from 1000 sq. ft. to 2000 sq. ft. for Tier 1 sales tax, however, the furniture products required large space and urged that FBR should increase its area to above 4000 sq. ft. for tax purpose. He said that customs officials have confiscated 5 trucks of clothes from the furniture market due to which the concerned businessmen were facing problems in meeting the furniture demands of customers and said that ICCI should play a role to resolve this serious issue.
Zahid Hussain, Chairman of, All Pakistan Furniture Association said that the furniture industry was the second largest industry in Pakistan, but was facing multiple problems. He said that the government should allocate separate space for furniture business in major cities on the pattern of Chiniot that would facilitate better growth of this industry. Jamshaid Akhtar Sheikh Senior Vice President and Muhammad Faheem Khan Vice President ICCI stressed that the government should provide support in introducing high-tech machinery and establishing more training centers for skilled workers for the furniture industry that would accelerate the growth of this important industry. Both sides discussed organizing a furniture expo in Islamabad to promote trade and exports of furniture products.

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