The Pakistan Readymade Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (PGRMEA) has called for a forensic audit of the yarn producers to break cartel of cotton mafia in line with the actions taken by the PTI government against sugar lobby.
PRGMEA has pointed out that the textile manufacturers have increased the rates of yarn by more than 40 per cent in a very short span, creating artificial shortage on the excuse of lower production of cotton in the country despite declining prices of cotton in the international market, hitting the apparel sector exports badly.
Sohail Sheikh, Central Chairman PRGMEA urged Prime Minister Imran Khan to take serious steps to break the textile industry cartel, giving it strong message that no cartelization would be allowed to manipulate prices in future and if they commit such crime they have to face the full brunt of law.
He asked the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) and Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) to conduct raids on the warehouses of yarn dealers who have been hoarding a huge quantity of yarn to create artificial shortage and manipulate the rates in connivance with the manufacturers, taking advantage of record low produce of cotton in Pakistan.
Ijaz Khokhar, Chief Coordinator, PRGMEA said that arrival of low-cost cotton yarn from neighboring country through land route, on the approval of ECC, could have broken this powerful textile cartel, shaking the monopoly of yarn producers to fix the rates artificially very high.
Moreover, the deferment of cabinet to allow yarn import via Wagah has not only damaged the clear stance of the government's zero tolerance against all kinds of mafias like sugar, flour, petroleum and IPPs but also sent a wrong message to the international buyers that Pakistan is facing yarn shortage and authorities are not allowing raw material import. So, Pakistan value-added textile export industry cannot fulfill the new orders timely due to short and expansive raw material.