All Pakistan Textile Mills Association (APTMA) plans to reopen a hundred former mills in Punjab. The decision was borne out of the promised Rs 44 billion subsidy for exporters assured by Finance Minister Asad Umar in his supplementary budget speech.
The subsidy will be derived from a massive regulatory hike in gas prices which has raised the price by 40 per cent from Rs.600 per million British thermal unit (mmBtu) to Rs 780 mmBtu for commercial consumers. The plan to create a new category for those industrial consumers who are registered manufacturers or exporters of one of five zero-rated sectors is to charge them the unchanged rate of Rs.600 per unit.
These five export sectors would be textiles including jute, leather goods, carpets, surgical tools, and sports goods business which the government of Pakistan intends to capitalise on by offering them internationally competitive gas rates.