KARACHI: The marble industry has suffered a loss of $7 million over 10 months of the current fiscal year because of power outages, said Sana Ullah Khan, Chairman All Pakistan Marble Industries Association.
Khan has written an emergency letter of complaint warning authorities that the loss will increase. He has sent the letter to Federal Minister for Water and Power Raja Pervez Ashraf, the Karachi Electric Supply Company (KESC) and the Trade Development Authority of Pakistan (TDAP). The 200 industrial units which produce marble and its products in Mangopir, a Karachi suburb, receive sporadic electricity, he said.
On a daily basis, factories receive 12 hours of electricity and if the situation remains unchanged, Khan said, the marble industry has no choice but to close factories. A step, he warned, that would impact thousands of families. According to the All Pakistan Marble Industries Association, the industry faced 153 hours of outages during March, 155 hours in April and 200 hours so far in May.
The unscheduled power outages mean the industry has not been able to meet deadlines. The association has demanded that the feeders supplying power to marble factories, including MPR feeder, Islamia feeder and Madina ceramics feeder, be declared industrial feeders.
Published in the Express Tribune, May 27th, 2010.