LAHORE: Citing energy crisis as the primary reason behind the below-par performance of the textile industry, the Pakistan Readymade Garments Manufacturers and Exporters Association (Prgmea) has said the government’s aim to boost textile exports from $13 billion to $26 billion by 2019 will require efforts due to the energy challenges.
Commenting on the new textile policy, Prgmea Vice Chairman Muhammad Naseer Malik, in a statement on Tuesday, called it a promising policy under the current economic circumstances and praised the government for coming up with an ambitious policy for five years (2014-19).
However, he said the government had already lost one year by delaying the announcement of the policy.
Discussing the Rs64.15-billion cash subsidy for the textile and clothing sector, he expressed the hope that, if implemented, the incentive would help in improving textile exports.
According to Malik, Pakistan is the eighth largest exporter of textile products in Asia. This sector contributes 9.5% to the country’s gross domestic product and provides employment to about 40 million workers.
However, he stressed the need for implementing the policy without any hesitation if required targets were to be achieved including a 100% increase in value addition from $1 billion to $2 billion per million bales in the next five years.
He called for releasing within a month all outstanding tax claims of exporters including drawback on local taxes and levies (DLTL), customs and sales tax rebate.
Talking about the GSP Plus scheme, Malik was of the view that the facility may not help achieve the expected growth in textile exports to $14 billion primarily because of unavailability of gas and electricity to the industries.
Published in The Express Tribune, March 4th, 2015.
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