KARACHI: All Pakistan Textile Mills Association (APTMA) in a statement on Thursday said that industries will fail to meet export commitments due to 50 percent reduction in gas supply.
Zahid Mazhar, Chairman, APTMA, Sindh-Baluchistan Region demanded the government to restore full supply of gas to the industries located in the province of Sindh and Balochistan as the industries in these province can’t operate and fulfill their export commitments at 50 percent load supply.
Mazhar said that the province of Sindh and Balochistan are producing about 84 percent of the system gas and consuming only 39 percent of the gas produced in the country, even then the industries of Sindh province are denied of their Constitutional Right guaranteed by the Constitution of Pakistan.
He said that the gas being produced in Sindh should first be supplied to the province and only after fulfilling the requirement of Sindh and Balochistan, surplus gas should be passed on to the other provinces in line with Article 158 of the Constitution of Pakistan.
Mazhar further said that the textile industry units located in the province of Sindh are mostly export oriented units and these units attract priority in the allocation of energy including gas supply.
As this is the peak season and any disturbance or short supply of gas would affect the timely shipments of export commitments resulting in not only decline in export earnings and loss of foreign buyers of textile products of Pakistan but would also result in decline in production and revenue of the government.
He said that the curtailment in gas supply by 50 percent in addition to low gas pressure has completely disturbed the production-lines, resulting in decline exports and causing damages to industry’s costly plants and equipments.
He further said that curtailment in gas supply is against the assurance given by the present government of Imran Khan of continuous and uninterrupted supply of energy both gas and electricity specially to the export oriented industry like textiles which is earning more than sixty percent of the much needed foreign exchange through exports.
It is also against the government policy of industrialization and export led growth, he added.
He said that the curtailment in gas supply by 50 percent to the Sindh and Balochistan based industry that makes about 52 percent of the country’s total exports is resulting in loss of foreign exchange and revenue.
He said production of export oriented industries has shrunk since the export sector has been compelled to work for 50 percent of its capacity.
In other countries governments give priority to their export oriented industry in supply of gas and energy, whereas domestic and commercial sectors are provided with LPG or LNG. On the contrary in Pakistan, our precious natural gas is being supplied to domestic and commercial sectors at the cost of industries.
Mazhar urged the Federal and Provincial Governments and the gas utility to look into this issue on urgent basis and to ensure continuous and uninterrupted gas supply otherwise the industries would be compelled to close their operations which will create not only irreparable losses to the economy of Pakistan but would also create law & order situation due to unemployment of large number of workers employed in these industries.