LAHORE: Pakistan is a beneficiary of the positive trends in international textile markets and All Pakistan Textile Mills Association aims to increase textile export to $40 billion in next 10 years.
APTMA Central Chairman Yasin Siddique said this in a press conference. “The country enjoys a competitive edge over most low-cost textile producing countries and is close to obtaining huge market access through GSP plus status in the European Union,” he said, adding, “Due to these positive trends, APTMA has decided to unveil its vision of increasing textile exports to $40 billion in 10 years.”
The textile industry is well placed to increase its exports to $26 billion in the next three years, he added. The industry, he said, does not want any subsidies but simply an enabling environment with the provision of power (electricity). “The decline in mark up would also give a boost to investment, which is badly needed.”
Group leader APTMA Gohar Ejaz said that the textile industry has the potential to take the country out of economic crises. “There is buoyancy in the textile industry but abrupt announcements about gas suspension is creating hurdles for entrepreneurs,” he said. “The fate of the economy depends on the gas supplies.”
He added that the aim of increasing textile exports would remain unfulfilled if the industries failed to operate round-the-clock.
APTMA International Trade Committee head Aamir Fayyaz Shaikh said that with a huge textile base, the availability of domestic cotton and labour force, Pakistan has grossly underperformed due to various negative factors. “There is potential in the country’s textile industry to increase exports, cotton production, value addition and jobs,” he said. “This is the only industry operating internationally without government support,” he said, adding that the industry in fact does not even enjoy a level-playing field as compared to its competitors that enjoy huge government subsidies.
“We do not want subsidies but would very much like to enjoy the same low interest rates, stable currency and adequate energy supplies available to our competitors in China, India and Bangladesh,” he said.
Furthermore, Chairman of Nishat Group, Mian Muhammad Mansha, deliberated on the role of leadership in the success of companies. Earlier, Commerce Minister Khurram Dastagir assured the textile entrepreneurs of all-out government support in realizing the actual potential of the sector.