LAHORE - The SNGPL has sent notices to the industries of Punjab including textile sector, intimating them for possible gas supply suspension in winter. All Pakistan Textile Mills Association (APTMA) Punjab Chairman Aamir Fayyaz warned of massive unemployment if SNGPL discontinues gas supply to the textile mills in Punjab.

Addressing a press conference at APTMA Punjab office, Aamir said gas supply to the textile mills was 25 percent in November, which reduced to 17 percent in last week of November and now they are asking for zero percent gas supply. “The actual gas consumption of Punjab based textile industry is equal to 60 MMCFD, which is 5 percent of 1200 MMCFD,” he said.

He said already 200,000 textile workers have lost jobs in a period of last five years. He also criticised the government for 40 percent reduction in cotton crop, saying that there is no proper research, which has resulted into supply of substandard seed to farmers. “The government has blamed the weather for crop failure instead of conceding its failure,” he deplored and stated that APTMA was paying Rs 700 million annually for research on cotton seed, which was of no use.

He said some 40 mills have already been closed down during last four months. The government has imposed Rs 40 billion new taxes on the IMF instruction against a loan of $500 million while the textile industry has lost $800 million exports on the other hand, he added. He condemned the government’ apathy and said that the member mills have lost hope altogether and ready to sell out their units to property developers or converting them into warehouses.