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Event Title: Senator Zeeshan Khanzada, Chairman Senate Standing Committee on Commerce Presiding over a Meeting of the Committee at Parliament House Islamabad

Event Date: 2023-07-27

Meeting of the Senate Standing Committee on Commerce was held today here at Parliament House with Senator Zeeshan Khanzada in chair.

At the outset comprehensice discussion took place regarding the Imports and Exports (Control) (Amendment) Bill, 2023. Ministry officials informed the committee that the powers to relax prohibition and restriction, however, imposed on import and or exports under the IPO/EPO, in cases of urgency or in public interest, are vested in the Federal Government. As such, all cases of relaxation, on one-time basis, have to be submitted to the Cabinet for consideration. To improve administrative efficiency and to secure interest of trade and commerce of Pakistan, it is proposed that the said powers to grant one-time relaxation may be vested in the Federal Minister for Commerce. As such, the Federal Minister/ Minister-in-Charge shall be responsible for actions both to the Cabinet and the Parliament. The proposed amendments will enable to address hardship cases, received from the business community and other quarters for one time relaxation of import/export related prohibitions and restrictions. After due deliberations committee unanimously approved the amendments.

Committee was apprised of the steps taken to resolve the issue of imported vintage cars already parked idle at dry port for clearance. Officials informed that a summary will be forwarded in coming days to Cabinet for consideration to resolve the issue as one time dispensation. Chairman Committee directed that ministry should consider providing waiver to affected people in terms of damage caused to the vehicles due to this inordinate delay.

Committee received a comprehensive briefing regarding the proposed amendments in the "Trade Marks Ordinance, 2001.

The Chairman Intellectual Property Organization of Pakistan (IPO) informed that amendments have been proposed to comply with the Madrid Protocol, enabling provisions are incorporated into the Trademarks Ordinance, 2001 (TMO-200l). In addition, certain amendments in TMO, 2001 are also necessary to undertake international best practices of trademarks registration.To add enabling, provisions for electronic services and bringing it in consonance with the IPO Act. 2012. He further informed that proposed amendments have been finalized in consultation with all the relevant stakeholders. The committee after thorough deliberations unanimously passed the amendments.

The committee meeting was attended by, Senator Fida Muhammad, Senator Saleem Mandviwalla, Senator Nuzhat Sadiq, Chairman IPO and senior officials from Ministry of commerce.