Apparel sector performance needs to be enhanced: Tarin

ISLAMABAD - Adviser to Prime Minister on Finance, Shaukat Tarin here on Saturday assured the delegation of Pakistan Garments Manufacturers and Exporters Association that government would fully support the textile and garments sectors. Bilal Mulla, Chairman Pakistan Apparel Forum, led the delegation. The delegation informed the Adviser about industry's financial crisis relating to increased cost of production and other problems confronting business operations of the Association members. Shaukat Tarin noted that the apparel sector performance during the period (June-September, 2008) comes to $ 1157.29 million, which needs to be enhanced to increase export-based foreign exchange earnings. He promised the delegation that government would support to textile and garments sectors that provide employment to 2 million workers in the garments sector only. Adviser said that relevant government organizations shall sit together, complete its homework, and shortly shall come out with a clear policy framework supportive to Pakistan 's apparel sector. The delegation informed Advisor that the Apparel sector constitutes 23 per cent of all the exports of the country, with 2.8 per cent decline in exports during the last fiscal year because of energy crisis and other political factors which badly affect the exports and resulted into widen the trade deficit. The delegation briefed the Adviser regarding recent competition from neighbouring and regional countries whereby Pakistan is loosing foreign markets. The Association members briefed Shaukat Tarin of their business related problems and impediments which need government's urgent attention for resolution - more specifically R&D support from government to the garments sector. Adviser appreciated value additions made by domestic textile and garments manufacturers that helps support our consumption and exports in local and international market. Government has put in place an integrated energy generation plan that, once implemented, shall resolve uninterrupted power supply issues to the garments sector, Adviser assured the delegation. Adviser to PM on Finance advised Ministry of Textile Development, Federal Board of Revenue and other government stakeholders to sit with representatives of Pakistan Readymade Garments Manufacturers and Exporters Association to jointly work out a support plan for the apparel industry.

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