SIALKOT - Pakistan’s key trade bodies have rejected the recent hike in POL prices and power tariff, saying that the raise would badly affect the export industries here.

The representatives of the Sialkot Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Pakistan Readymade Garments Manufacturers & Exporters Association, Pakistan Gloves Manufacturers & Exporters Association, Markazi Anjuman Tajraan Sialkot and other main trade bodies were addressing a press conference.

On the occasion, SCCI President Naeem Anwar Qureshi, PRGMEA Chief Coordinator Ejaz A Khokhar and Markazi Anjuman Tajraan Sialkot President Mehar Ghulam Mujtaba said that the increase would cause a new flood of price hike in the country. They termed the decision a bomb for export industry, saying that it would also ruin the small and medium enterprises. They termed the raise a conspiracy against the government.

“This hike will prove a cutthroat for the industrial sector, which is already striving for its survival due to loadshedding of electricity and gas,” they said. The SCCI president said that the hikes would also increase the business costs. He said that that it had become very hard for the Sialkot exporters to stay in competitions at international markets and added other countries were producing cheaper export products than those of Pakistan. Now, it had become a matter of survival for Sialkot industries.

He said that the situation had become unbearable for them, as the foreign buyers were cancelling their export orders worth millions of rupees daily, as the Sialkot exporters were unable to timely dispatch their export orders due to prolonged suspension of power and gas supply in Sialkot.