D'Souza, Trevor, Economic Review
Pakistan's garment and textile are two principal industries contributing more than 60 per cent to total export earnings, accounting for 46 per cent of total manufacturing and employing 38 per cent of the manufacturing labour-force.
According to official data, textile manufacturing exports increased by 23.31 per cent to US$417.83 million during the period July-May 2002-03 as compared to the corresponding period of previous year. Their share in overall exports stood at 64.88 per cent as against 63.70 per cent during July-May 2001-02, thus further reducing the contribution of other categories to exports.
The semi-processed categories-cotton yarn and cotton cloth accounted for more than 38.05 per cent of foreign exchange earnings of textile manufactures. Cotton yarn export were lower by 1.67 per cent but the foreign exchange accrued from it was higher by 1.10 per cent. Similarly, cotton cloth export was higher by 4.76 per cent, while foreign exchange earning exceeded that of the same period of previous year by 16.26 per cent.
The quantity of bed wear exported surpassed previous year's export by 32.26 per cent, but foreign exchange was higher by 42.11 per cent.
A 24.52 per cent increase was recorded in the quantity of towels export against actual of 36.87 per cent more foreign exchange. Tents, canvas and tarpaulin earned 34.34 per cent more than during the previous year.
A quantitative declining of 9.86 per cent was recorded in the export of ready-made garments, but it brought in 26.87 per cent more foreign exchange. Similarly, art, silk and synthetic textile recorded a growth of 2.50 per cent. Knitwear exports were 43.24 per cent more than during the previous year. But it fetched 33.04 per cent less foreign exchange.
Textile industrialists have termed the federal budget as "growth-oriented" but said that it "lacked direction" for industry preparedness under post-2005 WTO era.
The country's biggest and richest trade body, All Pakistan Textile Mills Association (APTMA) have concluded that the government did not give incentives to the textile industry.
The trade body also added "the industry is expecting a level playing field to remain competitive in the local as well as the international markets especially for man-made fibers and its products". It also said "the rationalization of tariff for these materials has not been considered in the budget."
The APTMA, on the positive side applauded the inclusion of Polyester Staple Fiber in the DTRE regime and the substitution of section 73 of Sales Tax Act 1990. It hoped that manufacture-cum exporters would not suffer again in the hands of implementers on amendments in the Sales Tax affairs. The trade body said that there was a further need of amendment to allow refund on stocks, which has been ignored in the budget.
The Government of Pakistan has adopted special steps to boost the country's cotton industry and market through a series of amendments. A standard committee has been appointed to look into ways to increase quality cotton production, to provide better crop knowledge to growers and to upgrade grading ginning and pressing systems to international standards.
The committee has passed an order to direct ginning and pressing factories that jute fabrics or polythene base should not be used at the time of packing bales. …