Energy crisis: Textile mills delay investment plans

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Energy crisis: Textile mills delay investment plans

LAHORE - Central chairman of All Pakistan Textile Mills Association (APTMA) Ahsan Bashir has sought uninterrupted gas supply to the Punjab-based textile industry on the SNGPL network, which is yet being subjected to four days a week supply suspension and eventually limiting industry’s export potential, growth, investment and job creation.

The supply chain of textile industry is inter-dependent to manufacture textile products, predominantly meant for exports. The gas supply constraints have impaired 35pc of the production capacity of the industry and, if enabled to operate uninterrupted, it has potential to add another $3 billion export of the country. It is an irony that the Punjab-based textile industry is being hit hard by the gas supply constraints, which is in actual 75% of total textile industry of Pakistan.

Meanwhile, Chairman APTMA Punjab Shahzad Ali Khan added that the textile mills in Punjab have been delaying their investment plans due to energy shortage. He said the new government should take up the issue on war-footing basis and resolve the energy supply issue at the earliest.

Shahzad further pointed out that unannounced loadshedding has caused huge machinery loss in the industry. He said the textile workers are the worst victims of the situation because rising lay off in the mills situation in Punjab.

The central chairman APTMA said there is an immediate need of resumption of five days a week gas supply to enable the industry for meeting export orders in hand and further commit to the international buyers that the Punjab-based textile industry is capable of manufacture export orders of any volume. Furthermore, it is pertinent to note that Pakistan has applied for the GSP Plus market access for European Union, which is likely to be effective by 2014 onwards.

This is right time for the government to prepare its textile industry and let it grow and expand in all directions to avail benefit of the market access scheme. It becomes more imperative when the upcoming government has shown clear-cut commitment of bringing investment and growth in the country. Therefore, the economic planners and policymakers are urged to ensure uninterrupted gas supply to the industry for meeting energy requirement for manufacture exportable goods to earn foreign exchange, create employment and increase share of textile industry in overall economic growth of the country.

Courtesy:   Nation

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