All Pakistan Textile Mills Association proposes energy tax

LAHORE –– Chairman All Pakistan Textile Mills Association (APTMA) Gohar Ejaz has proposed a special energy tax by the textile industry to meet energy shortage in the country.

He was addressing a press conference at the APTMA Punjab office here on Thursday afternoon. APTMA has full realization of the acute energy shortage and high cost of electricity production due to heavy dependence on furnace oil, he said, adding: the textile industry is ready to pay a special energy tax of $1.5 billion for three years provided it is evenly imposed on all consumers and the amount collected is transparently used for developing hydro-electricity projects.

According to him, the textile industry is likely to default on one third of $3 billion fresh orders due to energy shortage non-supply of gas and electricity. Interestingly, he said, the industry is also in possession of all required raw materials for processing the orders.

Only uninterrupted gas and electricity supply for the entire textile chain can serve the best national interest. Pakistan is all set to achieve an export target of $14 billion this fiscal but energy shortage is causing gruesome challenge for it with every passing day he added.

Gohar said APTMA has already offered the government to build an LNG terminal within six months in collaboration with the gas utility companies. Further, he suggested that additional cost of LNG imported is evenly passed on to all consumers to end gas shortage.

Chairman APTMA also urged the government to reduce bank mark up to 7 percent and curtail its borrowing to facilitate the private sector.

According to him, there should be a complete withdrawal of subsidy on Fertilizers and let the farmers pay the global rates of all inputs as they are selling commodities on global prices.

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