LAHORE - The Secretary Ministry of Industries has invited the local auto industry next week to separately discuss with them the issue of the import of used cars.The secretary has taken this decision after the protest of the associations of local car manufacturers and auto vendors against calling their meeting along with All Pakistan Motor Dealers Association (APMDA).Since, both Pakistan Automobile Manufacturers Association (PAMA) and Pakistan Association of Auto Parts and Accessories Manufacturers Association (PAAPAM) refused to sit with APDMA in the meeting scheduled for today September 13th, 2012 saying that APDMA is a trade body and not a manufacturing concern, the Secretary has now invited them next week for a separate meeting. The APDMA however met the secretary industries and apprised him the potential used cars posses in Pakistan. They asked for further relaxation and commercial import of 10 year old used vehicle.Earlier, in separate letters both the associations PAMA and PAPAAM, have questioned the wisdom of a trade body indulged in imports by the MoI which is mandated to serve the interests of the domestic industry and not traders lobby.Chairman Pakistan Association of Automotive Parts Accessories Manufacturers (PAAPAM) Nabeel Hashmi in his letter to Secretary MoI Shafqat Naghmi expressed his shock and outrage at the ministry’s decision pointing out that APDMA is not registered with Director General Trade Organization (DGTO) as a representative body of traders. ‘Hence, it does not qualify to be invited at official meetings along with registered trade bodies,’ he reasoned.He further accused the APDMA of distorting facts and statistics in their representation to the Prime Minister. To put the record straight, Hashmi pointed out that most of the 80000 cars that entered Pakistani market in last two years were shipped from Japan where the total number of Pakistanis residing is only 10000.‘No importer in Pakistan is allowed to import used car commercially. This facility is available to overseas Pakistanis only through transfer of resident and gift scheme,’ he said, adding that how come 10000 Pakistanis in Japan are so affluent that they send so many cars as gift or self import to Pakistan.He accused the APDMA of seducing innocent Pakistanis by buying car import papers from them at cheap premium and send the money needed to buy these cars in Japan through Hawala. ‘How can an association involved in illegal activities be invited at official meeting to discuss welfare of the auto industry,’ he questioned.On the other hand, PAMA’s Director General Abdul Waheed Khan also declined the MoI’s invitation to sit with APDMA but expressed willingness to meet the secretary MoI at some other time.It is worth mentioning the Auto Industry has seen its worst two months in terms of sales and it has lead to production stoppage at car manufacturers and auto parts vendors. Also, it is estimated that around 54 thousand used vehicles have been imported in last 12 months mainly from Japan.