The Union of Small and Medium Enterprises (UNISAME) has requested the Small and Medium Enterprises Development Authority (SMEDA) to again replay a positive role and urge the Ministry of Commerce to consider export of jaggery (Gurr) rationally and judiciously and allow its export.
President UNISAME Zulfikar Thaver said the HS code for Sugar is 1710.1210 and the H.S. code for Gurr is 1710.1310 which is different.
Thaver said the argument of Mincom that gurr is banned because of same HS code as sugar is wrong and therefore invalid.
Secondly Sugar and gurr are different commodities and their
prices are also different, sugar is cheaper and gurr is expensive.
Thirdly SME cane farmers livelihood is because of gurr as precious foreign exchange was earned because of gurr exports. The Mincom has admitted that the ban on export of gurr was unintentional and when there was shortage of sugar its export was disallowed and in the bargain the export of gurr was also disallowed although sugar production is 80 million tons and gurr exports are maximum 8,000 tons so there is no comparison of the two commodities.
It is pertinent to note that sugar is surplus now and government is considering allowing its export as the country needs foreign exchange.
UNISAME Council members have urged the government to treat the two commodities on the basis of rationality and not to be influenced by the sugar mafia. They should allow export of gurr no matter whether they decide to allow export of sugar or not. The export of gurr needs to be treated on it’s own merit irrespective of the surplus or shortage of sugar created by the sugar mafia. The same admitted mistake must not be repeated in future and no harm must be caused to the SME farmers producing gurr. Even the honourable Punjab High Court passed an order that no provincial or federal government will create any impediment in the production of gurr and raw sugar and the Pakistan Standard Quality Control Authority (PSQCA) adopted standard for gurr and raw sugar as sweeteners.
There is regular demand from Gulf, Middle east and Europe.
India and China are exporting gurr and earning handsome foreign exchange and our ministry is still mulling about it.