The News, International
Published Date: Apr 30, 2018
Roubina Ather, Member, National Tariff, has said that Pakistan should not be over-concerned on the on-going global trade war mainly between China and the US, Pakistan is not so much integrated in the global value chain and international market.
Ms Roubina was speaking at a special seminar on “Where does Pakistan stand in global trade war?’ organised here by Sustainable Development Policy Institute (SDPI). Ms Roubina said that protectionism is the real threat in any trade war which in turn shrinks the global trade volume. She said that if the trade war goes further, our textile sector and the apparel market may suffer in the long term. She asked Foreign Office to play its role to handle the existing geo-political situation and economic challenges.
Dr Vaqar Ahmed, Joint Executive Director, SDPI, said that the on-going trade war between China and the US may cause a rise in the cost of production and raw material in developing countries which in turn could bring about inflation and threaten the global economic recovery. He said that as trade declines and output falls, it may result in lower wages and unemployment. For a developing country’s diaspora working in US, this could have negative implications. Unfortunately, the trade wars are taking place at a time when global investors are also nervous regarding the post-Brexit UK and EU trade negotiations. In the short run, it is expected that trade between UK and its trading partners could decline, he added.
Dr Vaqar said that the other advanced economies can also step up protectionism and start making foreign imports more expensive through tariffs, para-tariffs and non-tariff barriers. He said this will hurt the decade-long efforts of trying to revive a more liberal trade regime and save multilateralism.
He said that Pakistan is an importer of iron, steel and aluminium from China and US, the trade war maybe a good omen if both economic giants end up having an abundant supply glut in turn brining global prices of metals down. He advised the public and private sector stakeholders to evaluate which commodities may face short term shortage due to hike in tariffs on Chinese goods and if some such goods can be supplied to the US by Pakistan.