The Commerce Minister’s summary of the policy guidelines for the employment of trade officers in Pakistani missions overseas was rejected by Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif, who also created a committee to provide recommendations for the policy guidelines.
Former federal secretaries Asad Hayauddin and Shahid Ashraf Tarar are on the committee, together with the Secretary of Finance, Trade, and Economic Affairs, Secretary of Establishment Division, and DGR&A Federal Board of Revenue. The committee will make suggestions after weighing the new policy guidelines and the current trade officer appointment rules, the source said.
According to the source, the committee will also examine the procedures for sending trade officers abroad as well as the candidates’ scores on written and other tests. According to the source, the prime minister would adopt the policy directives after considering the committee’s suggestions.
Notably, the Prime Minister had been requested to approve the policy guidelines for the hiring of trade officers in Pakistani missions overseas by the Ministry of Commerce. Throughout 40 trade officer positions are now open in various Pakistani embassies around the world, and the Ministry of Commerce has advised the Prime Minister to fill these positions in accordance with the new proposed policy guidelines, the source said.
The Prime Minister had already extended the contracts of the current trade officers stationed abroad for a further six months (from January 1 to June 30, 2023) after their terms expired on December 31, 2022. After the Prime Minister approves the revised rules, the process of appointing new trade officers will begin, according to the source.