Pakistan exported 200,000 donkey hides in last three years: Khurram Dastgir

ISLAMABAD:  Commerce Minister Khurram Dastgir Khan today informed the National Assembly that nearly two hundred thousand donkey hides were exported from Pakistan during last three years.

During question hour, the minister stated that Pakistan has exported 199,860 donkey hides in the last three years. Demand of any country seeking donkey hides has been fulfilled. The tariff is not a big issue, he added. In the same period, 6,950 horse hides were exported; however, Pakistan has not exported any lion or bear skin.

Meanwhile, PML-N’s Tahira Aurangzeb questioned that where does the donkey meat go. The minister replied that he is unaware of the facts and will submit his response after getting details from the provinces.

To a question, Khurram Dastgir Khan said overall exports of Pakistan crossed 25 billion dollars for the first time and recorded growth of 3.5 percent in the financial year 2014-15.

He said textile policy 2014-19 contains various short to long-term initiatives to double the exports of textile sector from current 13 billion dollars to 26 billion dollars.

The minister said the government has devised an aggressive plan for marketing of handicrafts and homemade products particularly for the terrorism affected areas.

He said the special package announced by the government for textile sector in the budget of 2014-15 has been extended for the current financial year. He said duty free import of textile machinery will continue in the current fiscal year.

To a question, the Minister said the government is working on Plant Breeders Right Act to provide a legal framework to support agriculture.

Replying to a question, Minister for Commerce Khurram Dastgir Khan said over one hundred eight thousand visas have been issued by Pakistani missions in United States during the tenure of the present government.

To a question, the Minister said the government is working on Plant Breeders Right Act to provide a legal framework to support agriculture.

Minister for States and Frontier Regions Lt General Rtd Abdul Qadir Baloch in a written reply said that presently there are 1.55 million registered Afghan refugees in Pakistan in addition to about one million unregistered Afghan.  He said from January, 2008 to December, 2015 a total of six lakh eighty one thousand Afghan refugees went back to their country6.

Responding to a calling attention notice moved by Asiya Nasir regarding illegal migration of Pakistanis to Thailand and Sri Lanka resulting in their detention over there, Minister of State for Interior Muhammad Balighur Rehman told the House that for the first time the government has framed a deportation policy.He said, under the policy Pakistan is now taking back the deportees after ascertaining that they are Pakistanis. He said some people go to Sri Lanka to seek asylum there.

Speaking on a point of order, Chairman Standing Committee on Foreign Relations Awais Leghari told the House that an in-camera meeting of the committee has been convened on Tuesday afternoon in which Foreign Office will brief on Iran-Saudi tension and the visit of Saudi Foreign Minister to Pakistan.

He said briefing will also be given on Pakistan-India relations in the aftermath of Pathankot terrorism incident.

Muhammad Talal Chaudhary while responding to points raised by Shafqat Mahmood said the PML-N government believes in freedom of expression and no restrictions have been imposed this regard. However, he said Constitution clearly mentioned certain limits while speaking about friendly countries.

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