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Low pressure gas cripples Punjab textile sector - APTMA
Jun '12
All Pakistan Textile Mills Association (APTMA) Punjab spokesman has said that exceptionally low pressure of gas supply has crippled textile industry in Punjab, unable to operate and keep over 10 million jobs intact.

He has further deplored the unilateral decision of SNGPL for unfair and inequitable disconnections of gas supply to textile industry during ATAs of gas fields in July. The SNGPL has not taken the industry stakeholders into confidence, he added.

He said the gas supply on the SNGPL network was below 50% against contractual pressure and sometimes it reaches to the vicinity of zero percent.

As per the prevailing schedule, the SNGPL is bound to provide five days a week uninterrupted gas supply to the industry in Punjab.

Earlier, he said, a move was underway to deprive the textile industry for another day from gas supply but timely intervention of the authorities concerned averted the move.

Spokesman said it seems that some invisible hands were operative to make textile industry inoperative in Punjab, as time and again these elements hit the viability of textile industry in Punjab.

He said the uncertainty of gas availability not only causing operational losses but also at time mills pay the labourers without deploying them to work.

The textile clusters like Manga Raiwind Road and Sheikhupura Road are almost out of order and textile workers are becoming jobless with every passing day, that may cause law and order situation ahead, he apprehended.

The CNG pumps, on the other hand, are extracting gas from pipelines through compressors but the authorities concerned have failed to take lawful action against them. Should the industry follow the suit to fulfill its demand for gas, he posed a question.

He said textile industry in Punjab has already witnessed gas supply cut for 184 due to non-availability of gas during the outgoing fiscal year.

However, the situation has become worst since last 10 days when the phenomenon of low gas pressure has crippled the operations of textile industry altogether throughout Punjab, he added.

He strongly criticized the imprudent tactics of managing the shortage of gas unfairly for export-oriented textile industry.

Spokesman said the state of national economy was already presenting a gloomy picture, as the current account deficit has reached to $3.4 billion against $466 million surplus last fiscal year besides an upward jump in balance of trade from $8.25 billion to $12.5 billion, reduction in reserves by $2 billion, drop in foreign investments by half, increase in industry NPLs by 30 percent and unemployment rate to 6%.

Also, he said there is heavy rupee depreciation and drop in exports by over 30% in quantity terms with no new investment in the industry. Rather, he added, the volume of textile imports is on the rise, making fast inroads to local market and no one in the industry has idea as what the policymakers and the utility agencies want to do with this country.

APTMA has urged President, Prime Minister and concerned authorities to immediately intervene and save the industry from collapse, already bearing heavy losses due to circumstances beyond its control.

All Pakistan Textile Mills Association (APTMA)

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