ISLAMABAD-Pakistan Furniture Council (PFC) will launch e-commerce units to explore targeted foreign markets, essential for doing business across the borders more effectively.
Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the council Mian Kashif Ashfaq shared this while talking to a delegation of furniture manufacturers on Sunday. He said that initially, PFC would target a few countries, primarily Middle Eastern nations. “We cannot target the whole world so we have to focus on a few selected countries like Saudi Arabia,” he added. Ashfaq said, “The choices of these nations are similar to ours and we hope for a good breakthrough from Saudis as two major players are ready to buy furniture from Pakistan.”
“We are also studying the dynamics of other potential countries where we can meet design, product quality and price requirements,” he maintained. He said that currently, furniture exports stood at roughly Rs500 million, however, in the coming years the council plans to increase this figure to $1 billion annually. “This is a realistic target, which could be achieved in five years if things continue to flow smoothly. We have already managed to cut the import size by 25% and this was done by targeted exhibitions.”
“However, the primary issue that persists for this sector is the availability of raw material which is an issue and our cost of wood is increasing due to this shortage,” he said, adding that the only option is importing the wood. Mian Kashif Ashfaq said that they were calculating the price compatibility and if it becomes viable to directly import from any country, then they would present a complete plan to the Ministry of Commerce to gain some support in taxes.
The CEO further shared that they were engaged in efforts to collaborate with some local manufacturers with Chinese counterparts under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).