ISLAMABAD         -             The government of Japan has extended grant assistance of JPY 500 million (approximately PKR 700 million) for enhancing the educational functions of the National Textile University (NTU) in Faisalabad.

This aid framework, the Economic and Social Development Program, is for procuring sophisticated equipment and machineries from Japan.

Notes to this effect were signed and exchanged between MATSUDA Kuninori, Ambassador of Japan to Pakistan, and Dr Syed Pervaiz Abbas, Secretary of the Economic Affairs Division, here Thursday.

National Textile University (NTU) is the only national university of Pakistan specialized in textile education in Faisalabad, a heartland of cotton production, producing thousands of quality graduates in the textile industry.

In this program, Ring Spinning Machine, Electronic Flat Knitting Machine, Carbon Fiber Rapier Looms and other equipment will be provided to the NTU. Textile is a key industry of Pakistan, occupying 50-60% of its total exports. According to a recent press report, textile exports have recorded growth of 3.94% in the first six months of the ongoing fiscal year.

Particularly in the value-added sector, knit wear recorded growth of 7.59 % and ready-made garments recorded growth of 12.08 % respectively. Equipment provided in this program will upgrade the educational environment of the NTU and thus will help strengthen the foundation of the textile industry in Pakistan, boost its exports of valued-added products and improve its national economy.

In the signing ceremony, MATSUDA Kuninori, Ambassador of Japan to Pakistan, committed that Japan continues to support Pakistan in its effort to maximize its potential in the areas with comparative advantages such as textile industry.

In 2019, the government of Japan provided USD82.12 million in total to Pakistan under the twelve new Grant Aid projects in different sectors including health, disaster-management, agriculture and water supply.

In recent years, Pakistan has been the largest recipient of Japan’s Grant Aid among the seven South Asian nations, Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bhutan and Maldives.