LAHORE - Governor Punjab Ch Muhammad Sarwar on Tuesday said that the government has strong realization of textile industry hardships and it has never desired mistreatment to the textile industry. “You create wealth and bring foreign exchange to the country,” he asserted.

The governor was attending the APTMA ceremony where the newly-elected central chairman assumed at the APTMA Punjab House. Federal Minister for Textile Industry Abbas Khan Afridi, Group Leader APTMA Gohar Ejaz, Chairman Businessmen Group Javed Iqbal, newly-elected members of Managing Committee, newly-elected Chairman APTMA Punjab Seth Akbar and members APTMA were also present to attend the Annual General Meeting of the association.

The governor congratulated the new office bearers of APTMA. Ch Sarwar assured of lobbying for textile industry and said the credit for availing GSP plus facility also goes to APTMA, as it raised the alarm bell timely and cautioned the government over negative developments.

He said the government will have to work in partnership with APTMA by acknowledging it’s issues and problems. Soon, he added, the government is devising a suitable strategy to strengthen the textile industry.  Addressing the meeting Central Chairman APTMA S M Tanveer said that the APTMA will make all-out efforts to save the industry by not letting the electricity and gas load shedding ruin its future.

He further vowed that the textile industry will not let the GSP plus facility go waste due to energy shortage. S M Tanveer said the APTMA members are unable to understand that why energy supply to textile mills is denied whenever there is Eid, cricket match or any political activity in the country. He said millions of textile workers are dependent on uninterrupted operations of mills, designed on 24/7 production for 365 days a year. He said shutting down the textile industry on the excuse of energy shortage is equivalent to the murder of the industry. “It seems that the textile industry in Pakistan is being ruined under a pre-planned strategy and no one is there to take notice of it.  Already, he said, Pakistan’s textile industry has been made regionally uncompetitive by increasing power tariff by 67% in one year.