Frequently Asked Questions

What is ISBOP?

ISBOP is an International Seminar on Business Opportunities, which will provide an information hub for interested investors, businesses, entrepreneurs and other relevant audience regarding business opportunities in Punjab.

What do you know about Pakistan?

Pakistan is a federal parliamentary republic in South Asia on the crossroads of Central Asia and Western Asia. It is the sixth-most populous country with a population exceeding 197 million people. In terms of area, it is the 33rd-largest country in the world with an area covering 881,913 square kilometers (340,509 square miles). Pakistan has a strategically advantageous location vis-à-vis being a geographical centre of the Asian Continent. Forming a bridge between the Middle East and the Far East, Pakistan can be a hub for trade and communication. A wide transportation network complements this strategic placement. With three major international airports and 38 domestic airports, Pakistan serves more than 50 international airlines. Pakistan also has Karachi, Port-Qasim and Gawadar sea ports.

What do you know about the Punjab Province of Pakistan?

Punjab is the most populous province of Pakistan, with approximately 55.06% of the country's total population. Lahore has traditionally been the capital of Punjab for a thousand years; it is Punjab's main cultural, historical, administrative and economic center.
Historically, the Punjab region has been the gateway to the Indian subcontinent for people from Greece, Central Asia, Iran and Afghanistan and Vice-versa. Due to its strategic location, it has been part of various empires and civilizations throughout history, including the Indus Valley Civilization, Vedic civilization, Mauryans, Kushans, Scythians, Guptas, Greeks, Persians, Arabs, Turks, Mongols, Timurids, Mughals, Afghans, Sikhs and the British.

What are the major imports and exports of Pakistan?

Pakistan’s major exports include textiles, fruits and vegetables, cotton, meat and salt, while imports are machinery, iron and steel, chemicals, pharmaceutical products and rubber etc.

What is the size of Pakistan’s economy? The GDP of Pakistan is USD 270 Billion and growth rate as 4.3 %.

Why to invest in the Punjab than other Provinces of Pakistan?

Punjab is located at the north-western edge of the geologic Indian plate in South Asia. Punjab is Pakistan's only province with both domestic and international cost-effective trade opportunities through direct geographical links to all other provinces of Pakistan, as well as India.
Due to its geographic location and the fact that five main rivers pass through the territory, the province is the most densely populated (101.4 million).

What is the role of CPEC in Pakistan economy?

China–Pakistan Economic Corridor is a collection of infrastructure projects currently under construction throughout Pakistan. Originally valued at $46 billion, the value of CPEC projects is now worth $54 billion. CPEC is intended to rapidly modernize Pakistani infrastructure and strengthen its economy by the construction of: modern transportation networks, numerous energy projects, and special economic zones.

What is the investment potential currently available in the Punjab province?

Punjab province is full of opportunities and currently potential is available in different sectors such as textile, agriculture, energy, information technology, health and education etc.

What are the main crops of Punjab province?

The major crops of Pakistan are wheat, rice, sugarcane, maize, oil seeds, grains and pulses etc.

What is the total energy production in Punjab?

In Punjab, at present, there is a demand-supply gap of about 4000 MW which is increasing at a rate of 6% per annum. Government of the Punjab is keen interested to lessen the demand supply gap of energy and started different sources of energy projects for electricity generation.

What are the incentives available for energy sector in Punjab?

  • Custom duty at the rate of 5% on the import of plant and equipment not manufactured locally.
  • No levy of sales tax on such plant, machinery and equipment, as the same will be used in production of taxable electricity.
  • Exemption is already available from income tax including turnover rate tax and withholding tax on imports; provided that no exemption of income tax on oil-fired power plants.
  • Repatriation of equity along with dividends is freely allowed, subject to the prescribed rules and regulations.
  • Parties may raise local and foreign finance in accordance with regulations applicable to industry in general. GOP approval may be required in accordance with such regulations.
  • Maximum indigenization shall be promoted in accordance with GOP policy.
  • Non-Muslims and Non-residents shall be exempted from payment of Zakat on dividends paid by the company.
  • The above incentives will be equally applicable to private, public-private and public sector projects.

What is the textile economy of Pakistan?

Pakistan is the 8th largest exporter of textile products in Asia. It is 4th largest producer and 3rd largest consumer of cotton. Textile sector is the backbone of Pakistan’s economy. It is the single largest sector which contributes 60 percent to Pakistan’s total exports. It comprises 46 percent of total manufacturing sector and provides employment to 40 percent of total labor force.
Foreign investors are warmly welcome to invest in these projects:
  • Lahore Garment City Project.
  • Export Development plan implementation unit (EDPIU)
  • Pakistan Textile City.
  • Faisalabad Garment City.
  • Karachi Garment City.
  • Pak-Korea Garment Technology Institute Karachi.

What is the concept of Special Economic Zone (SEZ) in Punjab?

A Special economic zone (SEZ) is a fruitful strategy for promoting trade, employment and economic growth in a country. A Special Economic Zone (SEZ) is a specific area of the land used to promote industrial growth in a country by providing more lenient economic and tax policies as compare to general economic policies in a country.

What are the declared and upcoming SEZs in the Punjab province?

The declared SEZs are as follows:
  • M-3 Industrial City
  • Value Addition City
  • Quaid-e-Azam Park
The upcoming SEZs are as follows:
  • Bhalwal Industrial Estate
  • Multan Industrial Estate Ph-2
  • Vehari Industrial Estate
  • Chunian Industrial Estate
  • Rahim Yar Khan Industrial Estate
  • Rachna Industrial Park
  • Punjab China Economic Zone

What are incentives available in Special Economic Zones (SEZs) for investors?

  • One time exemption from all custom-duties and taxes on plant and machinery imported into Pakistan.
  • Exemption from all taxes on income for enterprises commencing commercial production by the 30th June 2020, in the SEZs for the next ten years.

What is the potential and incentives for information technology sector in Punjab province?

Pakistan was ranked 4th for freelance development in the world (2015).Pakistan’s IT Industry is nearing $3.0 billion mark. Opportunities: The success of the IT industry and freelance sector, the ability of Pakistani IT workers to win international awards and the availability of a large highly qualified English speaking workforce points to a huge potential for boosting software exports, increased outsourcing opportunities and a bigger domestic market. Incentives:
  • The Government of Pakistan (GOP) continues to facilitate the IT industry through numerous sustainable development and accelerated digitization projects, research and innovation, software technology parks, subsidized bandwidth, international marketing, international certifications, internships and trainings.
  • Incentives to bolster growth include 100% equity ownership, 100% repatriation of capital/dividends, tax exemption on IT export revenues and subsidized state of the art Software Technology Parks. The GOP has a holistic plan for positioning Pakistan on the global outsourcing map, participation in international forums, organizing domestic conferences, scaling the software technology parks and facilitating certification (ISO 27001 and CMMI) programs. Promote entrepreneurship through ‘Technology Incubators’ and arrangement of Venture Capital funds for cross-sector collaboration

What is Punjab Board of Investment and Trade? What are functions pertaining the investment promotion in Punjab province?

Punjab Board of Investment & Trade is a not-for-profit set-up by the Punjab Government in 2009 to promote economic and knowledge engagement of national and international investors with Punjab. PBIT promotes and facilitates economic engagement of national and international investors with Punjab. It is proactively engaged with national and international entrepreneurs, business owners, professionals in decision making positions through its programmes and initiatives.

What is the procedure of opening a Liaison/Branch office for foreign companies in Punjab?

For liaison/branch office, the investor has to get registration first at Board of Investment (BOI) and then at Security and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP).

Which department governs the process for opening Liaison/Branch offices in Punjab province?

Board of Investment (BOI) governs the process for opening Liaison office in Punjab province.

What is the timeline required for completing process regarding opening Liaison/Branch office in the Punjab province?

Board of investment (BOI) issues permission for Liaison office after completion of 7 week time period.

After how much time it requires to renew the registration for Liaison/ Branch office in the Punjab province?

After a year following documents along with fee are required to get the renewal registration. Branch Office:
  • Copies of valid agreements/ contracts along with their duration
  • Income tax returns (for the last 03 years)
  • Copy of latest Audited Accounts
  • Proceeds Realization Certificates
  • Renewal Charges for each year @ US $ 1000 per year. (1-5 years renewal based on the request of the company).
  • Liaison Office:
  • Performance/Activity report
  • Receipt and Payment Statement
  • Proceeds Realization Certificates
  • Renewal Charges for each year @ US $ 500 per year. (1-5 years renewal based on the request of the company)

What is the role of SECP in registration of company?

Registration with SECP is mandatory. After the Finalization of Case at BOI, the company has to apply for registration at SECP.

What is the process of registration at SECP?

There are two ways to apply at SECP:
  1. Apply Offline:
    • Make an application in the name of Additional/ Joint/ Assistant Registrar of Companies for name Reservation
    • Generate Challan of PKR 500/- from SECP website
    • Submit fee in designated branches of MCB/ UBL
    • Application along with Original fee challan to be submitted in Company Registration Office
    • Fee for submission under Fast Track is Rs. 1500/- offline
  2. Apply using Online/ eservices Module:
    • Log on to eServices portal (
    • Enter data in the online form
    • Submit the process.
    • Take Print out of the Fee Challan of PKR 200/- and deposit in the selected branch of MCB bank Company incorporation is a two-step procedure.

How much time it takes to register the company from SECP in Punjab province?

SECP gives registration to company within three days.

What are the initiatives taken by Government of the Punjab for development of Punjab province?

Punjab has started number of projects in infrastructure, energy, textile and special economic zones for development of Punajb province such as:
  • Quaid- E-Azam Apparel Park, Sheikhupura
  • M-3 Industrial City, Faisalbad
  • Value Addition City, Faisalabad
  • Lahore garment city Project
  • Pakistan Textile city
  • Export Development plan implementation unit
  • 1320 MW Sahiwal Coal Power Project
  • 1000 MW Quaid-e-Azam Solar Power Project, Bahawalpur