PESHAWAR

Chairman Senate Standing Committee on Textile Senator Mohsin Aziz has expressed concern over declining textile export of the country and asked the government to take pragmatic measures to cope with the situation.

“The Government should be worrisome about the declining of textile exports of the country,” Aziz asked, in a press statement issued here on Sunday. He said: “How to control and how to bring export to normal and to increase it, should not be concerned of the government, as planned to increase export, especially presence of GSP+ status, granted by EU states, it should have ensured that the country exports should at least increase by $2 billion whereas the exports are even below the level of year 2009-10, he regretted.

The chairman said the textile exports have shown a sharp decline and even compared to last year export which was not satisfactory. This year, he added uptill now a further drop of 14 per cent compared to last year is very alarming, disappointing and worrisome.

Although, the PTI Senator said the government has put a duty of ten percent on yarn and fabric, which is no doubt an appreciable step and will stop the dumping of Indian yarn and clothes, which will surely improve local sales.

Aziz said that due to high cost of business especially that of electricity and gas prices, Pakistani products have become uncompetitive in the world market, and thus closer of mills, whereas exports are declining and laborers were becoming jobless what to talk of new employment opportunities and existing labour are rendering unemployed, he said.

“Textile the larger employer and largest agriculture produce buyer in the country, other than the major exporter of the country,” he said.

PTI Senator, therefore, said that there is dire need to reduce gas prices and also Gas Infrastructure Development Cess (GIDC), which has been increased around 40 per cent leaving the textile industry on verge of collapse.

Varying with competing countries, he said the region prices of gas, including India, Bangladesh Vietnam etc, are in the range of $3.5, $4.2 in the presently rate, while in Pakistan is around $ 7.5 , which come to around 100 per cent increase as compared to competing countries.

Similarly, he said in the prices of electricity in Pakistan, which is in the range of Rs13-14 per unit, whereas in the region, it is below ten rupees. In these circumstances, the Senator said how can be industry, especially exporting textile to be revived and compete in rest of the world.

He recalled the recommendation proposed by textile committee, sent to the government regarding improving the current situation, have also not been taken into consideration up till date, he regretted. For which urgent consideration of the government, to bring the cost of doing business lower, which is required, before it is too late, as revival of closed industry is an uphill and difficult task, under prevailing equation.