The Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI) expressed its great anxiety and concern over the strike called by All Pakistan Textile Mills Associations (APTMA), Pakistan Textile Exporters Association, Pakistan Hosiery Manufacturers Association, Pakistan Bedsheet Association and 25 other textile related associations which will cause a great damage to the textile industry, contributing around 8 percent in GDP, more than 60 percent in exports and provides employment about 40 percent of industrial labor force of Pakistan. This was stated by Mr. Aamer Ata Bajwa Acting President FPCCI, while lamenting that the textile industry is already confronted with many challenges including load shedding of gas and electricity and its exports is on a continuous decline. Textile sector needs support by the government so that it could play a vibrant role in the economy. Any adverse action will not only damage to the textile industry but may lead to closer of many further units causing a great number of unemployment.
Mr. Aamer Ata Bajwa emphasized on Finance Ministry and Commerce Ministry to give ear to the demands of APTMA and other related associations to overcome the present crisis in the best interest of country. He also urged the government to release the sales tax refunds and implement the Prime Minister package which was announced in January 2017. He also demanded to withdraw levy of Rs. 3.63 per kWh surcharge in electricity bill and reduce textile related imports from China and India to salvage the textile industry from its total collapse. Moreover, last year government announced a textile policy (2014-19) which also needs early implementation. He requested to Prime Minister of Pakistan to intervene in the issue and provide level playing field as the cost of production particularly the prices of utilities are very high in Pakistan as compared to Regional countries like Vietnam, India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka etc. which makes Pakistani goods uncompetitive in international market.