BOI chief briefs Finance Minister on CPEC SEZs

Gwadar Pro

Islamabad: Chairman Board of Investment (BOI) Atif Bokhari has briefed Federal Minister for Finance and Revenue Shaukat Tarin on the significant progress made in Special Economic Zones (SEZs) under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).

During the meeting at the Finance Division here, the Chairman updated the Finance Minister on the SEZs and informed him that the pace of work on CPEC projects was satisfactory.

Bokhari said the BOI was leading the development of SEZs by collaborating with all the government organizations at the Federal and Provincial levels, for the provision of infrastructure and utilities to operationalize these zones, said an official statement issued after the meeting.

This, he said, will help in stimulating economic activity in under-developed areas and create massive employment opportunities for the youth.

The Finance Minister commended the facilitation model adopted by BOI and assured full support and facilitation for creating conducive business environment to transform Pakistan into one of the top investment destinations as envisaged by Prime Minister Imran Khan, said the statement.

The Chairman also briefed the Finance Minister on working of BOI as a lead agency which is responsible for Investment Promotion, Investment Protection and Investment facilitation in the country.

BOI acts as an interface between local and international investors, public and private sectors and promotes trade and investment through policy and strategic interventions, he said.

The role of BOI has become more important than ever to attract and retain investment amid COVID-19 and in post-COVID scenario, he added.

The major initiative of BOI is improvement in Ease of Doing Business (EODB) in which Pakistan advanced 28 places to attain 108th position during 2020, he said.

Bokhari said the BOI spearheaded the reform process. BOI introduced a series of reforms to streamline areas such as starting a business, getting construction permits, registering property, getting electricity, paying taxes and trading across the borders.

Pakistan registered significant improvement in 06 key indicators which eventually led to improvement in overall ranking, he said.

The Chairman apprised about Pakistan Regulatory Modernization Initiative (PRMI) to make Pakistan’s businesses competitive by reducing compliance burden. The idea behind PRMI is to introduce Smart Regulation, he added.