LAHORE: The All Pakistan Textile Mills Association (APTMA) Punjab Chairman Abdul Rahim Nasir has urged the government to announce the new textile policy forthwith to attract new investment to the textile industry.

He said the textile value chain is affected badly due to a delay in the announcement of the new textile policy. He was of the view that a delay in textile policy may result in delay or even backing out of investors from possible investments in the textile chain. Currently, he said, Pakistan is short in production capacity and many exporters are refusing export orders because there is not enough capacity available in the country. A clear long term policy will give investors a clear vision that the government of Pakistan is ready to support the textile chain of Pakistan on long term basis.

According to him, the new textile policy carries the potential of taking the textile sector out of a crisis like situation. He said APTMA leadership has been making efforts for securing export led growth textile policy. A team led by former Chairman APTMA Ahsan Bashir has submitted a visionary draft of five years textile policy to the prime minister which has addressed the shortcomings in the previous policies, he added.

He said the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government is very keen to resolve industry issues in order to achieve export and growth targets. The textile industry is hopeful for an upsurge in exports; the government would implement the whole policy in letter and spirit.

He said timely implementation of the long-term textile policy would not only bring new investments in the country but would also enable the industry achieve the target of $30 billion exports in the next five years. He said ad-hoc policies would not prove beneficial for the country’s exports and that time has come to implement the long-term textile policy in letter and spirit.

According to him, Pakistan has an export potential of $50 billion provided the local industry is facilitated with regionally competitive energy tariffs and business-friendly environment.

Chairman APTMA Punjab said it was a challenging year both for the government and the industry due to global pandemic of Covid-19 which plunged global economy to the worst recession. This pandemic was fraught with risks of loss of massive export orders in the wake of closure of markets. However, the local industry strived hard for its survival in this testing time and we all stood like iron wall against all the challenges. It all resulted in regaining of the lost market at a fast pace, he added.

He has appealed Prime Minister Imran Khan and Minister for Commerce and Investment Abdul Razak Dawood for an early announcement of the policy so that the industry could avail its benefits through its true implementation.