Unisame urges for currency swap with Iran
Karachi: The Union of Small and Medium Enterprises (UNISAME) has invited the attention of the federal finance minister Miftah Ismail to the absence of currency swap agreement with Iran and urged him to work on this on top priority basis.
President UNISAME Zulfiqar Thaver said Pakistan cannot afford to lose rice business with Iran as Iran is the biggest buyer of our super basmati rice.
Thaver said although there are no sanctions on medicines and food items but the difficulties are being created to isolate Iran, and the payment system is hindered because of non-acceptance by SWIFT.
He said during the time of the PPP government when president Asif Zardari had visited Iran a memorandum of understanding (MoU) was reached to have a currency swap but it just remained a document and till date it has not been implemented.
He said now with the recent sanctions again it will be very difficult to have transactions with Iran.
Thaver said India on the other hand has arrangements and even during the earlier sanctions managed to trade with Iran. Pakistan lost our market to India. Iranians love Pakistani Super Basmati rice because of its length, taste and aroma. Undoubtedly it is the best rice in the world. It is the banquet rice and ranks first in Saudi Arabia and other Arab countries.
The SME sector fails to understand why our policy makers are found sleeping and not proactive and business is lost by their lethargy. Some experts say that it is not lethargy but our government does not intend to do anything to displease the U.S.A. and the lobby which is not in favour of business with Iran.
UNISAME experts say that we need to see our interest first and under the United Nations charter there can be no ban on exports of medicines and food items then why Pakistan is not making arrangements for shipments to Iran.