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LAHORE: The Pakistan Readymade Garments Manufacturers and Exporters Association has extended felicitation to Hammad Azhar on his appointment as Finance Minister and welcomed the historical decision of ECC meeting, held under his chair, allowing cotton yarn import from India, requesting the cabinet to also give approval in this regard at the earliest to overcome industry‘s raw material shortage.

“The all value-added textile and apparel sectors applaud Adviser to PM for Commerce and Investment Abdul Razak Dawood for his tireless efforts to get the summary approved by the Prime Minister and then from the ECC. We hope that PM Advisor will try his best to get the final support of the Cabinet for the approval of this ECC-approved summary. We assure the commerce captain that apparel sector will try to maintain the momentum of export growth after arrival of cotton yarn imports from all land routes,” a press statement from PRGMEA said on Thursday.

PRGMEA Central Chairman Sohail Sheikh and Chief Coordinator Ijaz Khokhar observed that Hammad Azhar rightly deserved this slot by virtue of his long and versatile experience of serving the country in various fields, as previously, he served as Federal Minister for Economic Affairs from July 2019 till April 2020 and Federal Minister of Industries and Production from April 2020 till March 2021.

Sohail Sheikh said that apparel industry is expecting a lot for export growth especially for SMEs, hoping that under his ministership the country would steer out of the multi-faceted financial challenges such as balance of payment; fiscal and debt sustainability, ease of doing business; rupee-dollar exchange instability; restructuring of tax administration and revival of manufacturing sector amidst third wave of corona pandemic.

Ijaz Khokhar was optimistic that during his tenure, the coordination between the value-added textile and apparel industry and Ministry of Finance would be further strengthened with the ultimate objective of maximizing foreign exchange earnings.

Appealing for duty and taxes free cotton yarn import from India through Wagah land route, he said the move would fully help control raw material of textile apparel industry. With low production, the country needed to import cotton in an effort to bridge the demand-supply gap, he added.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021

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