Federal Minister Ishaq Dar determined to up lift Small and Medium Enterprises sector: Zulfikar Thaver

Karachi, May 24, 2016 (PPI-OT): The Union of Small and Medium Enterprises (UNISAME) expressed sincere thanks to Additional Director State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) Imran Ahmed for his valuable guidance and giving good direction to the Work Group (WG) in its Capacity Building (CB) meeting on 23rd May 2016 at SBP under the National Finance Inclusion Strategy (NFIS).

President Union of Small and Medium Enterprises (UNISAME) Zulfikar Thaver said the sector appreciated the NFIS which is an excellent inclusion programme for the sector under the federal finance minister Ishaq Dar who is determined to promote and develop the sector. NFIS will go a long way in improving the efficiency and competitiveness of the sector.

Thaver thanked the SBP for their efforts in the NFIS and the focus on CB of SMEs. The WG is fortunate to have the officials of the Small and Medium Enterprises Development Authority (SMEDA), the Security Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP), Bank AlFalah, Allied Bank, First Women Bank and State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) as members who add value to the WG. The representative of IFC Mr Akbar Zaman also participated and stressed on capacity building of banks.

In the meeting chaired by UNISAME chief he proposed working from grass root level and highlighted the importance of the development of the primary sector, then the secondary and tertiary sectors respectively.

Financing the primary sector is very important for the development of the entire supply chain as the primary sector is the source of raw material. Likewise the secondary sector does the value addition and of course the services sector plays an important role in the development of the economy.

He emphasized on the role of the micro finance banks, the commercial banks and the need for access to finance of the micro to medium sized enterprises. The role of Islamic banking was also be discussed as an option for SMES as it is asset based financing.

He said that banking, leasing, insurance and logistics are the pillars of the economy and the sectors growth depends upon the financing, the pay as you earn schemes, making the banks comfortable in financing the sector by insurance and logistics which now includes collateral management.

Thaver pointed out that whilst the rate is affordable yet the access to finance is lacking and for this the WG needs to aim at developing products for the sector.

Thaver said as member of the NFIS Technical Committee he suggested the Vendors Credit Card for the entrepreneurs to offer them bridge finance and other such products are the need of the hour and he would call upon the members of the WG to suggest and develop products.

The micro to medium sized entrepreneurs require finance at affordable rate, easy repayment terms, uninterrupted supply of energy, conducive environment, regular supply of raw material and marketing support.

On the other hand they need technical guidance, infrastructure and information for modernization.

UNISAME has proposed land at concession, finance on affordable mark up and easy payment schemes, credit guarantee insurance, marketing support and logistics.

Other suggestions are the setting up of SME specific bank, Liaison committee, the office of SME Ombudsman, SME chamber of commerce, SME technical institute for capacity building of the SMEs. The need for SME Bureau for promoting SME brands will also be on the agenda. The sector is anxiously awaiting the Exim Bank

Thaver said he hopes the WG will accept our suggestions and recommend in their report for CB of the sector as envisaged by the NFIS

For more information, contact:
Union of Small and Medium Enterprises (UNISAME)
75/1 3rd Commercial Street,
Phase IV, D.H.A., Karachi, Pakistan
Tel: +92-21-35884225-6
Fax: +92-21-35380642
Cell: +92-300-8245307, +92-321-8245307
Email: unisame@gmail.com