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APTMA sets up camp in Islamabad to resolve issues

10
Jul '12
Spokesman of All Pakistan Textile Mills Association (APTMA) has said that 22-members delegation of APTMA representing all regions under the leadership of Chairman APTMA Mohsin Aziz, along with Zonal Chairmen and Vice Chairmen, is setting up five days camp in Islamabad to resolve textile industry issues with the government.

While in Islamabad, the APTMA delegation will call on President, Prime Minister, ministers for Textile Industry, Water & Power and Petroleum & Natural Resources.

The spokesman said as many as 57 textile mills prime users of electricity on independent feeders having hardly 135MW load, have been subjected to six to eight hours industry load shedding causing to one shift layoffs since last 60 days.

He said the government, in view of the severe electricity shortage, had asked APTMA to cooperate, which it did at the cost of layoff of 150,000 workers. The APTMA delegation will call on the Minister for Water & Power with a plea that the textile mills on independent feeders should be exempted from load shedding.

APTMA spokesman said the APTMA delegation will also hold meeting with Minister for Textile Industry to represent way forward for growth and investment in textile industry under Technology Up-gradation Funds Scheme (TUFS) to mitigate the impact of high interest rates.

He said APTMA has already proposed to the government for 100 percent refinance for the export-oriented textile industry across the value chain including spinning and weaving industry. The loans of textile industry have touched to lowest ebb of 7% of Rs7 trillion, which amounts to hardly Rs500 billion mainly due to energy crisis.

The textile industry in Pakistan has been waiting on the sideline of energy crisis in the absence of textile policy initiatives by the government. While the textile industry in Bangladesh and India kept on growing with availability of funds at concessional rates as against around 14% in Pakistan since last four years.

However, he said, still the effort to control inflation through keeping high interest rate. Rather, it is destroying the economy as both growth and employment rate continued falling to below zero percent. The textile industry being export-oriented cannot export inflation, thus require a sector specific intervention for its growth, he added.

He further said that APTMA has proposed that either the government should reduce interest rate to 8% or extend the facility of 100 percent Export Refinance to the industry ahead.

APTMA spokesman has expressed the fear that both the investment and industry viability would be hit hard in there is no BMR of US $5 billion in next three years to maintain production capacity of $15 billion. He said last BMR took place back in 2005.

The regional competitors made new investment exponentially during this period through sector specific interventions. India did the same and achieved positive results to manage rising cotton crop and unemployment.


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