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LAHORE: All Pakistan Textile Mills Association (APTMA) Punjab Chairman Abdul Rahim Nasir Wednesday opposed the Economic Coordination Committee decision of allowing import of cotton yarn from India, saying that it would badly affect the exports of the industry as well as the investment scenario in the sector.

He said there is no shortage of cotton yarn in the country and it is sufficient available domestically, therefore, there is no need to let it import from India.

According to him, the prices of cotton yarn had spiraled up because of the fact that there was a shortage of 10 million bales of cotton within the country and the industry had no option but to import from abroad. He apprehended that the local industry would be affected badly the rising trend of exports would get an adverse impact in a situation when new investment is underway and about 70 percent of the bank loans are being availed by the textile industry.

Also, he has termed the Economic Coordination Committee's decision to allow the import of cotton too late.

He has also pointed out a contradiction in government policy of import by stating that the government has allowed the import of cotton on the one hand while ignoring a shortage of about 2000 tons of Polyester Staple Fibre in the country.

According to him, there is no shortage of yarn in the country at present and the yarn prices are also consistent with the world cotton yarn prices. However, he added, a reduction in yarn prices is a recent phenomenon due to a drop in the prices of cotton futures.

APTMA showed solidarity with the GOP and Kashmir by not demanding cotton import from India although there was the highest shortage of cotton in the history of Pakistan. We believe the policy needs to be consistent and long term and short term selective policies will hurt the Textile industry of Pakistan. Chairman APTMA hoped that in the overall national interest Federal Cabinet would reverse the ECC decision and would not allow import of yarn from India. He added that spinning industry of Pakistan would now be forced to compete with Indian spinners who are placed at much advantageous position as they get gas at $4. He also demanded from the government to immediately reverse the decision to cut gas of export oriented units and announce 5-year textile policy including gas at $6.5/Mmbtu and electricity at 7cents.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021

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