LAHORE - The business community has apprehended that the GDP growth target for the ongoing fiscal year is expected to be massively missed due to dismal state of affairs of industry as well as agriculture sector.

“For the fiscal year 2015-16, the government has envisaged 5.5% GDP growth, comprising 6.4% industrial, 3.9% agriculture and 5.7% of services sector,” they added.

They said that more than 30% of the textile industry’s production capacity is non-operational mainly due to energy crisis coupled with highest tariff, imposition of multiple taxes/levies, lower commodity prices internationally and non-availability of conducive environment. “Presently, impaired capacity of textile industry has been affecting the overall country’s GDP by above 2%, exports by 16% and employment by 3%,” they pointed out.

There would be no need to approach the IMF in case the government becomes serious in reviving the impaired capacity of textile industry.

APTMA Punjab chairman Amir Fayyaz deplored that the government was charging 14 cents per unit of electricity when oil prices have dropped to $37 a barrel. He reminded that the electricity was available at a tariff of 9 cent per unit when oil prices were at the rate of $100 per barrel.

“We are closing the year 2015 on a very sad note, as the government does not seem interested in the viability of the industry. What bothers me the most is that each drop of billion dollar exports is resulting to the retrenchment of one million jobs in the industry,” he stressed. Former APTMA Chairman Gohar Ejaz said the textile & clothing exports are on declining trend since last three years.

“The textile exports were around $9 billion when my Group took over APTMA in 2009 and we raised it to around $14 billion,” he said and expressed his disappointment over reversal of exports to $10 billion now mainly due to high cost of energy being made available to the industry.

He said despite having GSP+, during FY 2014-15, Pakistan’s total exports are dropped by $ 1.21 billion i.e. 4.88 % in value terms, mainly due to under performance of manufacturing sector.

“From July to November this year, exports have further declined by 13.81% i.e. $ 1.37 billion worth of exports loss has been incurred only in first five months over previous fiscal year,” he added.

He said the exports potential of closed mills and impaired capacity is $ 4 billion within the textile industry value chain, which is needed to be arrested.

He further apprehended if the immediate measures to restore viability not taken, the manufacturing sector will collapse. It has further added that the significance of economic reporting has become crucial in the global economy.