FAISALABAD -  Workers' strike has put billions of rupees export orders on stake as operations of the Karachi Port South Asia terminal are suspended since Monday. If the strike prolongs, this could cause cancellation of vital export orders that would not only result in huge losses to the exporters but also to the national exchequer.

In a statement here on Tuesday, Pakistan Textile Exporters Association (PTEA) Chairman Mian Shaiq Jawed apprehended that huge foreign orders are feared to be cancelled as Karachi Port's South Asia terminal workers are went on strike for their demands. "If the strike prolongs further, this would lead to great loss to the exporters, fearing cancellation of vital orders as carriers and other fright-loaded ships anchored at the terminal have not been offloaded owing to the strike. National economy relies heavily on textile exports and a crisis like situation is posing serious threat to the viability of the industry. The industry is not able to meet international commitments and failure to perform will lead to disputes, loss of valued customers, loss of market share as well as damaging Pakistan's reputation as a reliable supplier," he said.

Workers' strike has ceased business activities as the entire operation at the terminal has been halted. At the moment when the industrial production and exports are registering positive growth, blockage of export goods would hurt the growth pace. "Our trade deficit has already reached at the highest and national debt is also on the hike, our economy couldn't bear such delay in trade activities. If the situation continues, industrial production activities will reduce further," he apprehended.

PTEA Vice Chairman Ammar Saeed was of the view that workers' strike is not only hurting shipments of export consignments but also disturbing import business as importers would be forced to pay demurrages for not clearing their consignments from the ports.

Furthermore, the manufacturing activities will also be affected as industrial units are not receiving raw materials resulting in heavy financial loss.

The PTEA urged the governments to intervene immediately and resolve the issue without any delay. If the issue will not to be resolved, the exporters will have to face huge financial losses and will also lose their hard earned export contracts.