ISLAMABAD - Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani directed the Ministry of Commerce to adopt a proactive approach for reducing trade deficit through enhanced exports by exploring new markets as well as for ensuring increased penetration in the existing ones for Pakistani products as this is imperative for the progress of the country. The PM said this while attending a briefing at the Ministry of Commerce Wednesday. Taking notice of the hindrances in the way of achieving higher targets of exports, the Prime Minister directed all the concerned ministries to adopt a coherent approach towards this end and supplement Ministry of Commerce's efforts to fulfil the objectives of its trade policy which aims at alleviating poverty and generating employment opportunities. He also stressed the need for fetching more foreign exchange through exploiting latest tools of export marketing, better commercial intelligence, proactive trade diplomacy and diversification of export products and markets with particular focus on agricultural products and SMEs, encourage exporters to improve quality, catering to consumer preferences besides complying with international standards. The Prime Minister emphasized that liberalisation, deregulation and facilitation which are the important components of the government's economic policies need to be highlighted abroad and directed commercial officers to reinvigorate their efforts inviting the foreign investors to take advantage of the investment friendly polices in the country. Highlighting the importance of private sector for the economic development of the country, the Prime Minister said that the central thrust of economic strategy was to create an enabling environment for the private sector to become an engine of growth. The PM said that Pakistan's geo-strategic location at the confluence of three vital regions of the world-South Asia, Central Asia and West Asia- presents challenges as well as opportunities and underscored the need for a comprehensive approach for leveraging the position. While briefing the PM on the working of the ministry and its attached departments, Minister for Commerce, Makhdoom Amin Fahim assured the PM that his ministry was fully alive to achieve the targets set for the current year's exports. Secretary Commerce in his presentation briefed the Prime Minister that in view of the evolving global challenges the ministry has undertaken various initiatives, which would contribute to the national economy through trade liberalisation and facilitation, improving competitiveness and reducing cost of doing business. He informed that these measures would facilitate higher access of Pakistani products in the world market. Apprising of the import strategy, he said the policy focuses on encouraging FDI in Pakistan, reducing cost of doing business, generating economic activity, making Pakistani products competitiveness and ensuring supply of essential commodities at reasonable prices to the consumers.