ISLAMABAD - Central chairman of Pakistan Readymade Garments Manufacturers & Exporters Association (PRGMEA), Shaikh Mohammad Shafiq has discussed the stuck up payments of PM package Duty Drawback of Taxes Order 2017-18 with Muhammad Pervaiz Malik, Commerce Minister, and Mohammad Younus Dagha, Federal Secretary Commerce.

Shaikh Mohammad Shafiq said that the textile and clothing industry has been the main driver of the economy for the last 50 years in terms of foreign currency earnings and jobs creation. He also pointed out the severe cash flow crunch has squeezed the productivity resulting in reduced exports as billions of rupees are blocked.

Both secretary and minister assured that they are doing their best to overcome these issues and informed that government has released Rs 5 billion to State Bank of Pakistan for the payment of  DDT PM package scheme and will release another Rs 6 billion by the next week and special tariff for textile is also in the process.

High cost of doing business was also discussed. The minister expressed that the exports have increased, which Shaikh Mohammad Shafiq totally refused and said: “I have a different point of view, if we cross the export by $25 billion then it could be termed as an increase.”

Shaikh Mohammad Shafiq also enquired about the time barred cases. Federal secretary commerce assured that government will also consider the same.

Shaikh Mohammad Shafiq also had a meeting with Ahsan Iqbal, the Federal Minister for Ministry of Planning, Development & Reforms at Islamabad. The project of establishing 1000 Industrial Stitching Units were discussed. Chairman PRGMEA said that setting up 1000 Industrial Stitching Units in Pakistan will encourage the value addition.

He further said, “We have full confidence in Ahsan Iqbal’s ability and expertise to uplift the economy. However, the government needs to provide a conducive environment by reducing cost of inputs to achieve export targets and special strategy may be formulated to strengthen Pakistani brands in the international market as well as support local SMEs to develop their own brands locally as well as in international market.”