Export of goods grew by 18 percent to $25.3 billion during the fiscal year 2020-21, which is the highest ever in the history of Pakistan. According to the data shared by the Ministry of Commerce on Thursday, the exports in June 2021 were also the highest in any month in the past and remained at $2.7 billion. The exports of services for the year are projected to be $5.9 billion. The cumulative exports of goods and services during the fiscal year 2020-21 will, therefore, cross the $31 billion mark. Commenting on the development, Adviser to Prime Minister on Commerce and Investment, Abdul Razak Dawood termed it a remarkable achievement of Pakistani exporters, considering the difficulties created by Covid-19 at home and resultant contractions in major markets abroad. Dawood said that it was not an easy task as many countries went into lockdown, and severely affected the business. “Not only our exports survived the crisis but also we have enhanced it in many sectors. I salute our exporters on achieving the milestone,” he further said. One of the major steps that helped achieve this remarkable performance was formation of the Ministry of Commerce’s Tariff Policy Board under the National Tariff Policy with the major objective to improve the competitiveness of the industry through gradual reduction of customs duty (CD), additional customs duty (ACD), regulatory duty (RD), time-bound tariff protection to strategic & import substitution industries and simplification of tariff structure and procedures. Since 2018-19, tariffs on more than 4,000 inputs (i.e. raw materials, intermediate and capital goods) have been rationalised. As a result, almost 40 percent of total inputs in terms of number of tariff lines as well as value of imports are at zero percent duty. This has improved the competitiveness of the industry witnessed in the form of 13 percent growth in large scale manufacturing (LSM) and 17 percent increase in exports despite Covid-19 pandemic. In the current budget 2021-22, major rationalisation in textile value chain, iron & steel raw materials for all kinds of flat products, pharmaceutical raw materials, machinery and equipment, inputs for footwear, glass, poultry, and food processing industry would further lead not only to revival of industrialisation in the country but would also enhance exports. With the current measures exports are expected to grow by 5 percent in the next two years.