Pakistan’s textile exports plunged by over 2 per cent in the first month (July) of the ongoing fiscal year (2014-2015) apparently due to the power crisis in the country that affected the industrial production.

The country exported textile made commodities worth $1.169 billion during July 2014 as against $1.198 billion of the corresponding month of the previous year, registering a decrease of 2.37 per cent in one year, showed the data of Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS) on Thursday.

This is major setback for the incumbent government that textile exports are decreasing from last few months despite getting GSP Plus status from European Union in January this year. The industrialists and exporters believed ongoing electricity shortage has reduced exports of the country in last four months.

“One of the reasons for decline in export proceeds was the closure of the ports for nearly 11 days during the Eid holidays”, said an official of the Textile Ministry. He also admitted that ongoing power shortage has also affected the country’s exports during last few months. However, he added that government had introduced incentives package in the budget 2014-15 for export promotion, effective from July 1.

The economists believe that exports are likely to surge in the months to come due to the rupee deprecation mainly because of the political unrest in the federal capital. The dollar value has already gone beyond Rs 101 level. Dr Ashfaque Hasan Khan, former adviser to the Ministry of Finance and Dean of NUST School of Social Sciences and Humanities, the other day said that State Bank of Pakistan is apparently not intervening in the market to depreciate the local currency to boost the exports, which are on declining side from last three to four months.

It is worth mentioning here that country’s overall exports stood at $1.93 billion in the July 2014 as against $2.1 billion of July 2013, showing a decline of 7.88 per cent in one year. According to the data, 60 per cent of the overall exports consist of textile exports in July.

The PBS data showed that export of raw cotton registered a negative growth of 57.96 per cent, cotton yarn 35.32 per cent, cotton cloth 8.13 per cent, yarn 12.93 per cent, art, silk & synthetic textile 12.64 percent, madeup articles 5.59 per cent and other textile materials 14.44 per cent. Meanwhile, following of the commodities recorded positive growth: cotton carded 104.48 per cent, knitwear 21.66 per cent, bedwear 14.54 per cent, towels 7.43 per cent, tents, canvas & tarpaulin 42.45 per cent and readymade garments 3.78 per cent during the month of July 2014.

According to the data, the country had spent $278 million on exporting food commodities during the month of July 2014. The break-up of food group showed that following food commodities have recorded negative growth: rice 18.86 per cent, fruits 32.01 per cent, vegetables 29.76 per cent, pulses 100 per cent, tobacco 66.18 per cent, wheat 100 per cent, spices 15.27 per cent, oil seeds, nuts and kernels 21.87pc, sugar 17.25 percent, meat and meat production 30.29 per cent, and all other food commodities 34.11 per cent during the period under review. However, only fish exports have were recorded at 5.68 percent during July 2014.

According to the PBS data, exports of other manufacturing group decreased by 17.02 per cent to $342 million during the previous month of July 2014. Exports of carpets, rugs and mats showed decline of 1.43 per cent, and sports goods export went up by 9.5 per cent. Similarly, exports of leather tanned increased by 15.06 percent

Meanwhile, exports of all other items were recorded at $117.225 million during the last month as against $119 million of the corresponding month of previous year, showing a decline of 1.64 percent.