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LAHORE: The local market on Monday remained steady and the trading volume remained low. Cotton Analyst Naseem Usman told that rate of cotton in Punjab and Sindh is in between Rs 21,000 to Rs 22,000 per maund. He also told that spot rate witnessed a decrease of Rs 1,500 per maund in three days.

Punjab Governor Muhammad Baligh-ur-Rehman has underscored the need to work on high quality cotton seeds in order to promote the textile industry and get maximum yield. He said this while talking to a delegation of Cotton Ginners Association (CGA) who called on him at Governor’s House on Friday.

The delegation included Chairman Pakistan Cotton Ginners Association Sohail Ahmed Hurl, senior vice-chairman Mukesh Kumar and others. During the meeting, the delegation apprised the Governor of the problems faced by the cotton ginners.

Talking on the occasion, the Governor said that textile sector has an important role to play in the country’s exports and economy; increase in exports of textile products would strengthen the country’s economy. He said that cotton and allied products provide lot of foreign exchange to the country.

Sohail Ahmed Hurl said on the occasion that the previous government had imposed 17% tax on cotton seeds, cotton seeds’ oil and raw cotton which affected the production of cotton crop, adding good production of cotton crop will bolster the country’s economy.

Pakistan faces potential economic collapse as inflation jumps and widespread civil unrest could be nearing. The latest sign the South Asian country is spiraling into the abyss is rising electricity costs that threaten to close tens of thousands of businesses.

Bloomberg reports that as many as 40,000 factories in Karachi, the country’s commercial capital, are being slapped with high power costs that make operating near impossible.

Rising power costs are so severe that nine business groups in Karachi told the government that an immediate plan needs to be formulated to lower power costs or face economic disaster.

Any shuttering of factories and mass layoffs could trigger social unrest in the commercial capital, home to more than 16 million people.

Discontent among businesses and households is already soaring with an official inflation rate of over 13.37% (double the official CPI to get a more accurate picture of true price inflation), the 2nd fastest-rising rate in Asia.

On top of high power costs, Karachi’s power utility — K-Electric Ltd. — warned customers of widespread power cuts for the first time in over a decade if power generation continues to struggle because of high fuel costs and supply shortages.

“These current conditions are severely hindering KE’s ability to procure fuel, causing a permanent curtailment of power generation” that translates to as much as 10 hours of planned blackouts for some parts of the city, said Sadia Dada, a spokesperson for K-Electric.

Pakistan is also a nuclear power - political elites may stoke a conflict with neighboring India to distract public anger from domestic financial pain.

The Spot Rate remained unchanged at Rs 21,000 per maund. The rate of Polyester Fiber was increased by Rs 2 and was available at Rs 307 per kg.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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