The Chairman, Pakistan Association of Automotive Parts & Accessories Manufacturers (PAAPAM) Mr. Mehdi Ali Rizvi, in his post budget press conference delivered various contradictory statements and replies to the questions asked by the media-men. His press conference was focused on two main points by urging the government to immediately revert back the depreciation allowance on second hand cars and duty free import of tractors. If we go through the detail of both issues, one could find out that these issues may be OEMs headache for which they should speak themselves, but it had no concern with a forum like PAAPAM. Being a true representative body of auto part manufacturers, PAAPAM should always welcome increase in number of vehicles in the country; whether it is through import of used cars or by enhanced production of local assemblers. In both cases auto parts base would be broadened, demand for spare parts would ultimately increase and result in further development of local vendor industry. But the most unfortunate fact is that PAAPAM has been playing as a tool in the hands of a few foreign OEMs and protecting their interests, instead of becoming a sole representative body of local manufacturers. It could be assessed from the fact that five years back PAAPAM leaders had claimed its total strength as about 240 members. In his write-up distributed by Mehdi Ali Rizvi in the above press conference entitled “A PAAPAM perspective” he says that in last twenty years the vending base has grown from zero to eight hundred fifty strong units making parts for the state of the art vehicles duly modified to suit our climatic and road conditions. On the same occasion in his press statement Mehdi said that in the last two decades the vending base has emerged and grown from a few to one thousand strong Pakistani manufacturing units making parts. While in PAAPAM Directory 2004 the total number of its members has been mentioned as 208 only. This contradiction was exposed and questioned in the above-referred press conference by some newsmen but Mr. Mehdi and his colleagues failed to explain as to why they were claiming the representation of a thousand vendors while their actual membership was not more than 208 only? This was a clear indication that in the present circumstances PAAPAM is not working as a genuine representative body of one thousand (as it claims) manufacturers of auto parts, hence it could not voice their real problems and requirements. To overcome this situation the Director Trade Organizations (DTO) must take cognizance and he should strictly scrutinize the grievances of real vendors and internal affairs of the body and as to why its doors were not opened for the membership of all the genuine auto parts and accessories manufacturers?
-Published on page#-6 June-2005 issue of MOBILE WORLD Magazine