LAHORE - The All Pakistan Textile Mills Association (APTMA) has urged the US government for market access to Pakistan in line with the EU, as the country badly needs creation of new jobs to overcome the severe impact of floods. Pakistan textile industry has existing inherent strength and the US should also come forward, said APTMA Chairman Gohar Ejaz, adding Pakistan textile exports may increase to $20 billion Dollars besides creation of 10,000 jobs on each $100 million exports, which the country needs badly for its people. He was addressing his first-ever press conference after being elected for the office of central Chairman of APTMA. Chairman APTMA expressed concerns over the rumours that Pakistan textile industry is being deprived of the zero-rating tax regime under the Reformed GST, which is likely to be imposed by October 1st 2010. He said the industry was exempted from sales tax since 2005 because of the fact that the amount of refunds was higher than the collection of sales tax from it. He said 85 per cent of textile products are exported in one form or the other and there is no rationale of putting it under the VAT, as VAT is a consumption tax. He feared the government would be burdening with a circular debt of Rs100 billion of textile industry if it puts textile industry under the VAT net, leading to severe liquidity crunch. He expressed the hope that the government would avoid withdrawing sales tax exemption of the textile industry. Gohar will take oath of his new office by the end of September. He was accompanied by newly-elected leadership of APTMA including Vice Chairman Shahzad Ali Khan and Chairman APTMA Punjab Ahsan Bashir. Chairman Pakistan Cotton Forum Seth Muhammad Akbar was also present on the occasion. Gohar said Pakistan could also overcome $10 billion trade deficit in case the US extends free market access like the EU. While terming it a golden opportunity Chairman APTMA said the EU has proved that it has understanding of issues confronting Pakistan. He congratulated the textile industry and other concerned government departments for this achievement. He said APTMA has always been stressing for trade not aid from the EU and the US. Highlighting the importance of duty-free market access, Gohar said Bangladesh exports have shot up from $5 billion in 2005 to $18 billion in 2010 and created 30 million jobs in the textile industry. Chairman APTMA said Pakistan exports are stagnant over the last many years and recent trade concessions from the EU would give boost to its exports.