PAKISTAN: Textile sector was expecting Rs 100 billion from federal budget

KARACHI: The textile industry was expecting Rs 100 billion relief package from the federal budget 2007-08. But the allocation made by the government has failed to boost industrial growth and exports.

The budget is a populist one as it tends to win support among common people ahead of general elections.

The government has announced reduction in prices of essential edibles and increased the salaries of unskilled labour.

The Industry feels that giving relief to common man is OK but for this the government must first generate revenues for that relief.

Pakistan has missed its export target this year. The increase in government's revenue is directly linked to industrial production. The government has increased the minimum wages and this may lead to inflation.

The increase in wages will further bring down the competitiveness of the textile manufacturers and if they can procure the raw material at a lower cost then only the wage hike can be justified.

The government should atlease use export refinancing facility.

The government has plans to open 5,000 more utility stores but the traders doubt this as the same announcement was done in last budget but the government failed to keep its promise.

The 15 percent increase in salaries of public servants also holds the potential to fuel inflation.

The government should cut down its expenditures which has only been rising over the last few years.”

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Added: June 11, 2007 Source: Agencies
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