Supporting export competitiveness amid COVID-19 in Pakistan

Supporting export competitiveness amid COVID-19 in Pakistan

Publication details

  • Monday | 10 May, 2021
  • Vaqar Ahmed, Asif Javed, Maaz Javed, Syed Shujaat Ahmed
  • Research Reports,Project Publications
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Executive Summary

This study aims to explore issues faced by firms in the trade sector amid COVID-19. We have gone beyond while looking at changes in turnover and export volumes across the different waves of pandemic. We have also explained the types of additional costs faced by exporters and importers during the lockdowns; coping strategies adopted by exporting firms; extent to which government support for trade sector firms was effective; and what new policy measures may be desired as the impact of pandemic are fully realized over the medium term. Additionally, attempts have been made to find out if tools available to the private sector for engaging with the government during crises time were sufficient to provide an understanding of losses and response. To answer the above-mentioned research questions, we have relied on several different approaches. We have looked at the pre and post COVID-19 trade statistics and literature which has emerged during the first and second waves of the pandemic. Our firm-level survey includes responses from export sectors, including textile, leather, agro and food processing, and digital services. This survey of 306 exporting enterprises from Islamabad, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Punjab, and Sindh provinces was conducted between October and December 2020. Structured public private dialogues were also conducted with stakeholders from Balochistan, Gilgit-Baltistan and the provinces mentioned above.