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Increased cotton exports may devastate garment sector
Jul '08
Pakistan Apparel Forum (PAF) has urged the Government to discontinue export of cotton as soon as possible, if they want to save the crumbling apparel industry of the country.

The demand of cotton from domestic enterprises is much more than the total cotton produced in Pakistan and on top of it if the authorities allowed export of cotton, there is bound to be shortage, resulting in increased prices of cotton, the brunt of which ultimately will have to be borne by the garment producers.

In 2007- 08 the total production of cotton in Pakistan was around 12.6 million bales, whereas annual requirement was nearly 15.5 million bales. As a result, the country has to import lint worth Rs 50 billion yearly to meet the shortfall of approximately 3 million bales.

Industrialists are of the opinion that, if the Government does not impose ban on the export of cotton then local sector will face serious shortage in the coming year.

Previously cotton, was available for Rs 2,700 to Rs 3,000 per maund. However, now the rate has jumped up to Rs 4,200 per maund and there are chances that price would further augment if the situation remains the way it is.

According to the experts, this increase in price will mostly affect the medium size exporter, as in order to complete the pending overseas orders, they will have to buy cotton at the existing price, automatically increasing their cost of production.

Once the most flourishing sector of the nation is now surrounded with gloom and to further add to the woes, recent exports of nearly 10,000 bales of cotton to India has shaken up this industry.

PAF is a group comprising of various textile and garment sectors of the nation. It includes Pakistan Hosiery Manufacturing Association, Pakistan Readymade Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association, Pakistan Cotton Fashion Apparel Manufacturers and Exporters Association.

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