Almost all of us have heard that Pakistani businesses lack international competitiveness due to their failure to implement international standards. Even businesspeople desire a centralised solution to this issue. As desired by the industry, traders, and exporters, the Ministry of Commerce (MoC) will launch the first-ever National Compliance Centre (NCC), which will facilitate manufacturers, exporters, and certification agencies through information sharing and training/capacity building.
The ministry will reportedly open the centre on April 18, 2023, according to official sources.
According to the proposal, the National Compliance Centre (NCC) will have a federal office and provincial secretariats to assure national coordination. The NCC will have an organisational structure comprised of eight compliance clusters, with the possibility of establishing additional clusters as necessary in the future.
The clusters will concentrate on various compliance areas, including human rights, labour rights, climate change, governance and democracy, sanitary and phytosanitary standards, quality assurance standards, sustainability, textile traceability, digital trade/e-commerce, competition, and service sectors.
The NCC will serve as a repository for all international compliance requirements and develop an online database and other resources to aid businesses, industries, agricultural producers, public and private sector stakeholders, and other entities in understanding and complying with international regulatory requirements.
In addition, the NCC will hold regular outreach activities, such as seminars and training, to increase the capacity of stakeholders regarding compliance regimes and to disseminate pertinent information through a variety of channels.
In addition, the NCC will communicate with concerned institutions/agencies/organizations (international or local) in order to share information, collaborate on awareness campaigns, and develop regional/sectoral/product-specific compliance solutions. The NCC will also facilitate regular dialogues between public and private sector stakeholders in an effort to promote the adoption of compliance regimes and enhance firm-level competitiveness.
The NCC will evaluate production processes and advocate for the adoption of international best practises through trade policy measures. The NCC will also employ short- to medium-term technical experts to aid businesses, associations, industries, and agricultural producers in implementing international best practises. In addition, the NCC will assist small and medium-sized businesses in developing business strategies for the incorporation of international compliance requirements and facilitate access to international certifying bodies for domestic businesses, industries, associations, and agricultural producers.
Non-tariff barriers are eroding the multilateral trading system brought about by the establishment of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) through the imposition of binding tariffs. Importing nations erect these barriers under the guise of specific regulatory, environmental, social, health, and quality compliances. Frequently, Pakistani manufacturers and exporters are confronted with unanticipated requirements, particularly when exporting to developed nations and nations forming various Economic Blocs, Customs Unions, Free Trade Areas, etc. In the majority of cases, it increases the cost for Pakistani manufacturers. There was a need to continuously modernise our production processes, making them climate-friendly, sustainable, and more inclusive, particularly in terms of sharing the benefits of international trade agreements and market access concessions with all supply chain participants.