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FAISALABAD: Unavaila-bility of cotton yarn and non-payment of duty drawback of taxes and income tax refunds is adversely impacting the export growth putting millions of dollars export orders at stake. Government must accord immediate remedial measures as further delay will seize the industrialization, halt the export growth and lead to unmanageable level of unemployment.

In a statement here on Thursday, Chairman Pakistan Textile Exporters Association (PTEA) Muhammad Ahmad expressed grave concern over cotton yarn crisis. Extreme shortage of cotton & unprecedented price hike of cotton yarn has almost disrupted the export cycle and textile industry has become economically unviable due to escalating prices on the back of short crop, he lamented.

Cotton production is set to drop to a historic low during the year when demand is up by 13% with the textile sector operating at full capacity after decades, he added. With low production, country needs to import cotton in an effort to bridge the demand-supply gap. Low cotton productivity and ban on cross-border cotton import has spiked the price of cotton yarn and textile exporters are forced to pay a higher price for raw materials. He appreciated the Prime Minister Imran Khan for taking serious notice of cotton shortage and allowing the import from Afghanistan and Central Asian States via Torkham land route; however he considered it insufficient to meet the apparel industry’s raw material needs as importing yarn from central Asian countries is not only expensive but will take one to two months to reach Pakistan. In order to overcome the scarcity of basic raw material, he demanded to allow cross-border import of cotton yarn from India to ensure continuity in export growth.

Patron-in-Chief PTEA, Khurram Mukhtar expressed concern over undue delay in disbursement of exporters’ Duty Drawback of Taxes and Income Tax refunds (over Rs50 million) as exporters’ liquidity has already taken a strong negative hit from adverse impacts of COVID-19.—PR

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021

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