SM Tanveer, Chairman, All Pakistan Textile Mills Association and Tariq Saud, Chairman APTMA Sindh, Balochistan region said that proposed increase in gas tariff from 1st January 2015 by 30 percent per MMBTU is punitive and unjustified.

They said that this exorbitant increase in gas tariff would cripple the entire textile value chain, which is using gas for power generation and processing.

The statement was issued after an emergent meeting specially convened to discuss and formulate a strategy to convey the consequences of the drastic increase in the gas tariff to the government. SM Tanveer has urged the government to remove inefficiencies in the system to ensure adequate and non-discriminatory supply throughout the country. Chairman APTMA said that due to extreme shortage of electricity, the textile sector has set up captive power plants in order to enable it to meet its export orders and contribute to the GDP of the country. This has helped in increasing our exports over the last few years and today with the extension of GSP Plus status by the European Union, the industry is poised to contribute to a manifold increase in textile exports despite its cost of doing business being one of the highest in the region. The textile industry is faced with many challenges and this increase in gas tariff will only serve to add to its costs and bring the industry to its knees, he added.

Tariq Saud has said that the viability of the textile industry is an issue forcing the textile industry to close down operations in case the government fails to come up with workable solution and bring the energy cost at par with competitors in the region.  He urged the government to provide special concession for the textile industry to ensure its competitiveness and capability to continue to earn much needed foreign exchange for the country.  

He demanded that following decline in international prices of petroleum products the government should make provision for passing on the relief in full measure to the industry as well as masses and to recover its revenue loss of about Rs. 70 billion through other sources including capping of leakages in the system.