The Pakistan Readymade Garments Manufacturers and Exporters Association (PRGMEA) and Pakistan Hosiery Manufacturers & Exporters Association (PHMA) have appreciated the government's decision of exempting the industry from lockdown in view of providing financial relief to the workers. They pledged to take strict precautionary measures as directed by the government and health experts.
According to PRGMEA chief coordinator Ijaz Khokhar, opening the industry will retain millions of workers on their jobs, especially the women and the poor. The association also welcomed the government’s decision of releasing refunds of Rs 100 billion to the industry as this move will address the liquidity challenges faced by exporters, improving cash flow of the garment exporters and ensuring that workers will get their salaries on time.
PRGMEA regional chairman Sohail A Sheikh said orders worth millions of dollars from foreign buyers have either been cancelled or postponed. Under the prevailing circumstances, the small and medium enterprises immediately need government's financial assistance. Pakistan Hosiery Manufacturers & Exporters Association Vice Chairman Shafiq Butt suggested the government to take economic measures to keep industrial wheels running and save the livelihood of millions, including disbursement of all outstanding sales tax refunds at a fast speed.
Meanwhile, All Pakistan Textile Mills Association (APTMA) Punjab chairman Adil Bashir demanded the government should withdraw the ad hoc bills of Sui Northern Gas Pipelines Ltd (SNGPL). He also demanded extension in the last date for payment of gas bills issued for the month of March till lifting of the lockdown. Since there has been no production since March 23, 2020, therefore, there is no consumption of gas in the textile units.