KARACHI - Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry has expressed concern over the abolishing of Engineering Development Board (EDB), and called for its continuity with more effective and transparent role for promoting engineering industry, especially auto industry.

FPCCI President Zubair F. Tufail called a meeting of the stakeholders at the Federation House to discuss the abolishing of EDB. It was attended by all FPCCI Vice Presidents (Sindh Region) and the representatives of different associations including automobile, automotive and auto spare parts associations, said FPCCI release here on Wednesday. The meeting noted that the EDB was playing a fundamental role in promotion of engineering sector, protection of domestic industry and strengthening it by giving incentives.

The closure and shifting the responsibility of EDB would disrupt the large scale manufacturing; especially the auto industry and would further complicate the situation including the creation of impediments in investments in auto sector especially the vending sector, they said. EDB was an affiliated department of Federal Ministry of Industries, established in 1995, with an aim to strengthen engineering sector, promote exports, increase technical training and enable import substitution. The board had presented two auto policies -- in 2007 and 2016- which enhanced the number of auto assemblers from 3 to 55.

The stakeholders urged the proper implementation of auto policy, which would develop competition and bring opportunity of technology transfer.

They also stressed on transparency, efficiency, expertise and merit in the EDB to fulfil the objectives of strengthening the engineering sector in the country and integrate it with the world market to make it the driving force for economic growth as the future of Pakistan depends upon the industries particularly on engineering, chemical and information technology industries which had huge potential for contributing to economic growth and employment generation.

President FPCCI Zubair F Tufail assured stakeholders of FPCCI support and assistance. "FPCCI will try to convince the government to continue with Engineering Development Board with complete restructuring of its Boards of Directors by including the representatives from private sector, Board of Investment and Pakistan Engineering Council," he said.