The All Pakistan Textile Mills Association (APTMA) has urged the Government to immediately remove the duty being levied on petroleum products.
APTMA Group Leader Gohar Ejaz said in addition to removal of duty on petroleum products, the Government should equally distribute the 300MMCFD gas between the textile industry and the independent power producers (IPPs).
He mentioned that the textile sector in Pakistan earned a record amount of foreign currency last year as the Government gave priority to the textile industry. This resulted in transferring PKR 300 billion to cotton growers, he added.
He stressed that every person involved in the country's textile value chain contributed to this achievement, without demanding any kind of subsidy from the Government.
He expressed concern that such an important industry was not denied gas for five days. He asserted that gas was made available to the textile industry in the country for five days a week, even when a similar situation arose last year.
Mr. Ejaz wanted to know why householders and CNG pumps were being given priority in gas supply, instead of the textile industry, which provides employment to about 10 million workers.
He stated that the textile industry generates US$ 1 billion a month, and hence requested that the Government should not do anything that leads to the closure of the industry.
He pointed out that there are plenty of alternatives available for domestic and CNG needs, but an alternative to the textile industry, which brings investment and provides employment, cannot be easily found.
He suggested that the scarcity of gas can be controlled using winter tariffs. He added that there would not have been any shortage of gas this year had the Government made LNG import possible within time.
The textile industry was ready to invest US$ 1 billion in LNG project of 500 MMCFD, but the Government should be serious in setting up the plant, he said.
He said Petroleum Minister Dr. Asim Hussain had assured APTMA that the textile industry would be supplied with gas for 3.5 days a week. Accordingly, the textile industry adjusted and closed 50 percent of its capacity.
However, instead of resuming the gas supply, the SNGPL has issued a notification of gas shedding for indefinite period.
Fibre2fashion News Desk - India