Lahore - Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif has said that textile industry is the backbone of national economy and it will not be allowed to shut down. He said that due to personal interest taken by Prime Minister, the issue of supply of gas to textile industry was resolved last year and measures are being taken for supply of gas to textile industry in Punjab this year as well.

He was talking to a delegation of industrialists participating in Pakistan Textile Summit 2014, which met him at Model Town. Federal Minister for Textile and Industry Abbas Khan Afridi, Provincial Minister for Labour Raja Ashfaq Sarwar, Chairman Planning & Development, concerned authorities, former Chairman APTMA S.M Tanveer, Gohar Ijaz and a large number of industrialists associated with textile and garment sectors were present on the occasion.  The Chief Minister said that the issue of supply of gas to textile industry will be resolved through collective efforts and supply of gas will be continued for the industry like last year. Moreover, he said, steps will also be taken for the provision of electricity to the industry. He said that LNG will arrive in the country from the beginning of the next year and Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif has issued instructions for laying pipelines for the supply of LNG to Punjab. He said that short, medium and long term measures are being taken for coping with the energy crisis. He said that an irreparable loss has been caused to the economy by sit-ins while power projects have also been delayed.

He said that the elements staging sit-ins have shown their enmity to the nation by getting the visit of Chinese President postponed. He said that agreements of investment of billions of dollars have been reached with China in Beijing and these agreements would have been signed in Islamabad had the Chinese President come to Pakistan. He said that China will make total investment in these projects and not a single penny of loan is involved.

He said that leadership has again supported to Pakistan at this difficult time. Shahbaz Sharif said that unfortunately, full benefit has not been taken of reliable friendship with China but now Pakistan Muslim League-N government led by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif will come up to the confidence which has expressed by Chinese leadership.

Federal Minister for Textile and Industry Abbas Khan Afridi said that the problems of the industry will be resolved and export will be increased to 26 billion dollars.

Chairman APTMA S.M. Tanvir while speaking on the occasion said that Chief Minister took personal interest and restored the supply of gas to the industry which resulted in increase in export. Gohar Ijaz expressed the hope that Chief Minister will continue to play his role for resolving the problems of the industry.