LAHORE - Small and Medium Enterprises Development Authority (SMEDA) facilitated Rs.15340.96 million investment in different projects during the first decade of its operation. Shahid Rashid, Chief Executive Officer, SMEDA told while addressing a press conference at SMEDA Head Office to mark the completion of first decade of SMEDA, which was established on October 13, 1998. He said, the investment facilitation was made possible through program lending schemes designed for various SME sectors including Fisheries, Transport, Furniture, Power loom, Cutlery, Auto parts, Carpet, Footwear, Khaddar, Mining and Textile. The major banks involved in these schemes were NBP, Bank of Khyber, SME Bank, and the Union Bank, he added.  To a question, he said that an investment of Rs.9,500 million was made in the Transport Sector only. The sector development strategies facilitated by SMEDA, in collaboration with other stakeholders, in Fisheries, Transport, Dairy, Gems & Jewelry, Marble & Granite, Furniture, Surgical Instruments, Textile and Leather sectors are contributing to enhancement of trade and investment, besides creating a number of employment opportunities and fresh avenues for exports. Based upon SMEDA's sector development strategies, Shahid Rashid said, about 7 new implementing agencies, in private-pubic partnership, such as Pakistan Dairy Development Company, Pakistan Gems & Jewelry Company, Pakistan Hunting and Sports Arms Development Company, Pakistan Stone Development Company, Pakistan Horticulture and Export Development Board and Agri-mall were now working actively for uplifting the respective sectors for increased exports, employment and investments. CEO, SMEDA said that by undertaking 16 projects of Rs.1.68 billion investment under Public Sector Development Plan, SMEDA has considerable work on ground. He said that the projects initiated by SMEDA under PSDP had a significant importance in development of infrastructure for small and medium industries and business throughout the country. The projects include Gujranwala Business Center costing Rs.98.78 million, Agro-food Processing Plant, Multan costing Rs.135.19 million and Support Industries Development Center, Sialkot costing Rs.272.61 million etc. He further disclosed that SMEDA's web portal www.smeda.org.pk  had so far been visited by 3,366,179 visitors from 189 countries round the world.  Shahid Rashid, responding to a question regarding future target of SMEDA, said that his organization expected to enhance value addition of Rs.5159.73 million in SME sector over the next 10 years of its operation through its projects, while also strengthening its core role of facilitation and business development support for SMEs. Jameel Afaqi and Iftikhar Hussain, General Managers, Alamgir Chaudhry, Provincial Chief, SMEDA-Punjab and Liaqat Ali Gohar, Deputy General Manager were also present on this occasion.