KARACHI - Pursuing the vision of Prime Minister Imran Khan, the Ministry of Commerce is going to soon launch E-Tijarat Portal and E-Commerce University, along with E-packet concept to promote E-commerce in the country. 

This was informed by Special Assistant to Prime Minister on E-Commerce Senator Aon Abbas Buppi while speaking at 4th symposium at Trade Development Authority of Pakistan’s Head Office here on Wednesday. It was participated physically by representatives of different private companies engaged in E-commerce and of different trade bodies of the country through video-conferencing. Prominent among the participants were TDAP’s Chief Executive Officer Arif Khan, Secretary Ahsan Ali Mangi and Director General Riaz Shaikh.

SAPM said E-Commerce Portal was ready and Prime Minister Imran Khan would launch it very soon. The process of setting up E-Commerce University was going on fast track. His ministry was also working on promoting of E-packet concept through Pakistan Post Office network as it was would greatly help boost E-commerce even rural areas of the country.   

 “Prime Minister Imran Khan feels that E-commerce is the only way forward to strengthen the economy and create jobs especially for youth and women,” he added. He said the government was seriously working on providing better environment, infrastructure and regulations, and financial inclusion for the promotion of E-commerce. 

SAPM said he had meeting with Governor State Bank of Pakistan Dr Reza Baqir here today (Wednesday) and discussed various banking issues relating to E-commerce.  “I also requested SBP Governor to issue directives to banks for setting up E-commerce desks.”  He agreed to the proposal from the participants that more efforts at the government and private sector level be made to create awareness among the people, especially educated youth and women on E-commerce start-ups, down at district chambers. That, big E-commerce players in private sector like Amazon and Daraz should be provided accommodation at TDAP offices and chambers of commerce in the country for educating about E-commerce.

SAPM said two such symposiums were already held by the commerce ministry in different cities and the fourth one would be held in February 2022 to disseminate information about E-commerce and E-start-ups.   

It was mentioned that good account of information was available on facebook for beginners of E-commerce, how to start their E-trading. Intending E-commerce players were advised not to pay big amount as fees to private E-commerce training companies. 

The participants emphasised on creating better environment including easy procedures and softening of rules and regulations particularly about registration and taxation of E-commerce start-ups.  

On pointation, SAPM said the government was taking all required steps to protect end-consumers of E-commerce. 

 “We would have to come up with strategy, how to stop unfair practices in E-commerce,” he said.    It was also recommended that E-trading be exempted from sales tax for its promotion. The meeting emphasised that Pakistan direly needed diversification and value-addition of export products, along with exploring new regional and international markets. The best packaging had emerged as new demand of the world market and Pakistan would have to move accordingly to survive rather gain in the international market.  

Pakistan exporters, including of rice, were exporting goods as commodity instead of transforming into brands to capture better share in the world market.