Game plan: Pakistan can profit from relocation of Chinese firms

Friday, November 7th, 2014 2:44:19 by



LAHORE: 

China’s decision to relocate part of its manufacturing sector to cost-effective locations should help Pakistan if the country can chalk out a strategy and train its labour according to the industry’s needs.

This was stated by Pak-China Joint Chamber of Commerce and Industry President (PCJCCI) Shah Faisal Afridi after a meeting with his Chinese counterparts.

China is witnessing an economic transformation, following Europe’s model of relocating part of its manufacturing sector to economically viable places that offer skilled labour at cheap wages. Afridi said technical training should be provided to labour so that they can take advantage of China’s move.

“Pakistan can make its unemployed manpower effective in the current scenario by providing technical training in industry-related work ambits,” said Afridi.

He was confident that Pakistan can attract the Chinese manufacturing sector by developing a trained workforce for industries.

He termed this phenomenon a great industrial transfer, which has brought in plenty of opportunities. “One-third of Chinese manufacturers for textiles, garments, shoes and hats had already moved all, or part, of their production centres outside China,” he said.

Around 40% of the major companies had planned to move factories from China to other locations, which include Vietnam, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Philippines, said Shandong Shifeng Group General Manager Yuan Lee.

The movement has also been verified by a survey conducted by the ‘Capital Business Credit’, a US-based financial consultancy firm, he added.

Pakistan has the ninth largest labour force in the world, according to the labor force survey 2013-14, clocking in at 57.24 million. Out of this, 3.4 million people are unemployed, while many are employed in areas not relevant to their expertise.

Afridi pointed out that the export of quality manpower is the main driver in growth of remittances, adding that the country has a 60% economically active population that can increase productivity if their services are properly utilised.

Published in The Express Tribune, November 7th, 2014.

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