Pakistan - Fall in Indian textile exports to play havoc with local industry
Dated- 20 Apr , 2012 - Pakistan
All Pakistan Textile Mills Association (APTMA) chairman Mohsin Aziz has said that the declining textile exports amid double-digit interest rate regime and exposure of the local industry to the Indian textile exports under trade normalisation arrangement would play havoc with the local industry.
Expressing concerns, he said, there is a worrisome decline in textile exports both in value (22 percent) and quantity terms in March against the corresponding period, slashing down the overall exports by $1 billion during the first nine months of the current fiscal year against the same period last year.
The APTMA chairman lamented that the textile industry is fast losing its strength in a situation when talks on bilateral trade with India are near finalisation without addressing the concerns of APTMA.
It is quite amazing that yarn and synthetic fibre are put in the positive list, whereas the polyester staple fibre (PSF), the raw material for synthetics-based textile products, has been placed in the negative list, he said.
The government should ensure level-playing field for cross-border trade by equalising not only import duties, but domestic duties, as well, he said, while citing an example, he said, the duty inclusive taxes on yarn is over 25 percent in India against 10 percent on synthetic and zero percent duty on cotton yarn in Pakistan.
Furthermore, he said, the PSF should also be placed in the positive list with the same duty structure. And if not, than the synthetic fibre and yarn should also be put in the negative list, he added.
Aziz said that exclusion of PSF from the negative list of items not importable from India is necessary to ensure provision of the basic raw material to the textile industry, especially in the present scenario of acute domestic demand-supply shortfall of more than 150,000 tons due to complete shutdown of Dewan Salman Fibres Limited, one of the largest PSF manufacturers of the country.
Exclusion of PSF from the negative list assumes an added urgency in view of the fact that the value-added items of PSF are not on the negative list and are freely imported from India, discouraging value-addition in the country, he said.
The APTMA chairman said the Pakistani traders welcome the opening up of trade between the two countries and only wish for equitable and fair trading terms.