LAHORE - Pakistan Hosiery Manufacturers and Exporters Association (PHMA) chairman Dr Khurram Anwar Khawaja has said the benefits of the renewed GSP Plus status can only be harvested by maximum value-addition in finished products rather than exporting only raw materials, which cannot be possible without relaxation in import policies.

It is to be noted here that raw cotton exports from the country during eight months (July-Feb 2017-18) of current financial year grew by 38 percent as compared to the corresponding period of last year. Dr Khurram urged the government to take steps to abolish all the duties and taxes imposed on the polyester yarn, enabling the knitwear and sportswear industry to compete with the international market and to earn valuable foreign exchange amidst historic trade deficit of the country.

He asked the government to appreciate the role of value-added apparel sector for its potential to harvest maximum benefits of GSP Plus, providing mass employment to the jobless population of the country.

He further said that GSP window had opened tremendous opportunities by way of inflow of abundant export orders which the industry would not be able to execute if liquidity problem of the industry is not resolved at the earliest.

Dr Khurram further added that billions of rupees against previous Drawback of Local Taxes & Levies (DLTL) Order 2009 since 2011; Incremental DLTL Order 2014-15 since June 2015; Incremental DLTL Order 2015-16 since April 2016; Incremental DLTL Order 2016-17 since April 2017 and DDT under PM Export Package 2017 of exporters are pending with government causing liquidity problems to the exporters in keeping up their export commitment, which must be released immediately to streamline cash flow.

The implementation of revised PM package is must for enhancement of the exports at the desired target of the government.

The PHMA leader also said that the role of associations must be restored in the DDT Order 2017-18 in view of their productive and contributory services.

He asked the authorities that revised notification should be issued in consultation with the real stakeholders, restoring the required clause of 'association role' for the true implementation of PM Package.

He said that the total duty and taxes including anti-dumping on polyester yarn regulatory duty, anti-dumping and other taxes account for 30 percent which makes our polyester based sportswear industry more expensive to compete with international market.

He said that country’s sportswear industry is majorly based on polyester made garments and now government has imposed 5 percent regulatory duty on imports of polyester yarn and an average 7 percent anti-dumping duty.

He said major local manufacturers of polyester yarn manufacture only Draw Textures Yarn which is textures and they don't manufacture polyester Fully Drawn Yarn (FDY) but the anti-dumping duty is also imposed on the FDY which is not locally manufactured.

He said that knitwear export industry was adding manifold value to basic commodities like raw cotton and yarn and it alone fetched foreign exchange of more than two billion dollars for the country which was highest of all.