LAHORE: Pakistan Association of Automotive Parts and Accessories Manufacturers (Paapam) has announced that the sector cannot operate beyond April without the grant of exemption to downstream suppliers of the tractor industry.
In a statement, Paapam Chairman Muhammad Akram said a large number of tractor parts manufacturing small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and Paapam members had approached him, asking that the provincial government should be persuaded to let their supply chain operate as early as possible so that they could support the country's agriculture sector.
He added that the main hardware and machinery markets of Brendth Road, Hall Road, Badami Bagh and Daroghawala were main suppliers to the tractor industry and they should be allowed to operate.
Former Paapam chairman Mumshad Ali lamented that the sector had been under pressure for the past two to three years, with tractor sales on the decline, and Covid-19 hit the industry hard in its peak sales season, in the midst of wheat harvest months of April and May.
"If this sales season is missed due to lockdown, this year will be the lowest sales season in well over a decade for the tractor industry," he said.
Besides that, it would also impact next year's rice and cotton yield adversely as unavailability of tractors and parts would delay the sowing, he added.
Ali stressed the need for giving permission to the entire supply chain, which included material, tools and lubricant suppliers, to operate with proper Covid-19 precautions so that harvest and sowing could be properly done.
Published in The Express Tribune, April 25th, 2020.
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