Message of President UNISAME Zulfikar Thaver
UNISAME is a forum sponsored by SZT Group as a social responsibility and entrusted with the task to create awareness of the rights of the SMEs, to identify impediments in SME growth, to recommend remedies and help the government in policy making. UNISAME has given road map to the policy makers for the uplift of the sector on fast track basis. It also submits proposals for economic growth, ease of doing business, cost of doing business and incentives for the micro to medium sized sector. UNISAME has established help line for SMEs and SZT Group is acting as a facilitator for the sector.
We all agree that the SME sector is the vibrant sector, backbone of the economy, the engine of growth and the vehicle for poverty alleviation and best for creating employment.
The government knows fully well that there are 5 million SMEs in Pakistan and in addition to this there are equal number of SME farmers and although this sector is referred to as the SME it is the majority sector capable of growth and stimulating the economy.
The SMEs contribute to 30% of the exports and most of them are involved in value addition and they contribute 35% to GDP and offer employment to about 40% of the labour force.
The impediments to SME growth are lack of education, finance, proper environment, infrastructure, logistics and these days the energy crisis is a real issue.
In order to promote, encourage, facilitate, motivate and upgrade the SME sector we have suggested to the government to take the following measures.
1. To educate the SMEs about the new technologies in production, management, marketing, accounting and inventory control
2. Encourage the SMEs to modernize and make plans for balancing and replacement of their units and arrange transfer of technology.
3. Facilitate the SMEs through banking, leasing,insurance as these are the pillars for growth.
4. The SMEs in order to progress need law and order and protection and need to feel safe.
5. The infrastructure needs to be improved.
6. The SME sector is dependent on logistics which encompasses transportation, warehousing and collateral management.
7. The need for alternate energy is being felt due to the energy crisis.
8. There is an urgent need of industrial estates in all the provinces. Also the sector needs Special Economic Zones (SEZs).
9. The government should adopt a policy of fair taxation and also give tax benefit to innovative industries and new units.
10. The SMEs need their own chamber of commerce and also their own export promotion bureau.
11. The NPO, EDB, SMEDA, PCSIR and TDAP are all dedicated institutions and working hard for the promotion and development of the SMEs together with the commercial banks but they all need to co-ordinate with one another for integrated efforts
The above is not an easy task and for this the government should strengthen and equip the Small and Medium Enterprises Development Authority (SMEDA) and broaden its scope to enable it to reach the SMEs involved in manufacturing, trading and services.
The union enjoys the institutional support of SMEDA and is grateful to the officials who listen and try their best to resolve the issues and SMEs are advised to visit the website of SMEDA www.smeda.org.pk for guidance.
with best wishes and profound regards
President UNION OF SMALL AND MEDIUM ENTERPRISES ( UNISAME IS A REGISTERED TM )
President COMMERCE FORUM
Solicitor, Senior Advocate High Court
Chairman SZT GROUP
Convener SME FARMERS ASSOCIATION (SMEFA)
Member National Committee on SMEs and Steering Committee for SME Policy Development Ministry of Industries, Government of Pakistan
Member National Financial Inclusion Strategy (NFIS) Technical Committee GoP
Chairman Capacity Building Working Group NFIS GoP
Member: SME Pakistan Forum and Focus Group On Green Banking, State Bank of Pakistan
Member Federal Tax Ombudsman Advisory Committee
Recipient of SME Life Time Achievement Award at 11th Micro & SME Conference awarded by Shamrock International Conferences