FAISALABAD: Pakistan Textile Exporters Association has stressed for continuation of Duty Drawback of Taxes incentive for further three years to boost the value added textile exports and uplift the economy. DDT incentive has positively impacted as textile exports recorded a 7.7 per cent growth year-on-year to US$ 9.99 billion in the first nine months of 2017-18.

Commenting over the prevailing situation, Chairman PTEA Mian Shaiq Jawed said that as a result of growth-led initiatives of the Government country’s exports surged by 13.1% to in July-March 2017-18 over the corresponding period of last year. The main driver of growth was the value-added textile sector as exports of ready-made garments went up 12.56% during the period in value, and 12.85% in quantity; while those of knitwear edged up 14.12% in value and 3.52% in quantity during these nine months. Exports of bed wear went up 4.99% in value and 3.16% in quantity; whereas exports of made-up articles, excluding towels, increased by 7%.

He termed the positive growth in exports as a welcome sign for an economy struggling to contain falling foreign exchange reserves; however he underline the need of continuity of DDT scheme allowed under PM package. Production of exportable surplus is the need of the hour, he said and added that revival of US$ 4 billion closed production capacity is really a big a challenge. Only an enabling environment can attract prospective investors to undertake new investment initiatives by the textile industry, he asserted.

He urged the Government to continue DDT scheme for further three years. This will generate approx 10% annual growth in value added textile exports and would add US$ 1.5 billion in each year.

PTEA Chairman urged the Government for immediate payment of stuck up liquidity in refund regime to get maximum industrial growth and significant increase in exports as cash flow crunch is negatively impacting the export oriented textile industry. Giving details, he said that 30 billion rupees of textile exporters are held in sales tax regular refund regime; whereas 10 billion rupees are held on account of custom rebate and 15 billion rupees are held under income tax credit. Similarly, incentives allowed under textile policy 2009-14 are also unpaid as Rs20 billion are outstanding under TUF schemes; whereas Rs10 billion under Mark-up Support and Rs3 billion are stuck up under DLTL scheme. Furthermore, an amount of Rs21 billion is also unpaid against Duty drawback of taxes under Prime Minister Trade enhancement initiative.

Vice Chairman Ammar Saeed terming value added textile sector as the backbone of the economy with great potential for earning foreign exchange, urged the Government for immediate release of blocked refunds to enable the textile exporters to retain their hard earned export markets at this time of tough competition. Government, at several times, set deadlines of liquidating the long outstanding refunds of the textile industry but still huge amounts are outstanding and delay in release of funds had triggered serious liquidity crunch for cash starved textile exporters. This is having adverse impact on the employment and the economy of the country as textile industry is unable to tap its potential in accordance with capacity, he said. Regional competing countries are rapidly multiplying their exports just because of the edge they have on the cost of doing business. Pragmatic policies in consultation with stakeholders need to be formulated to reduce the cost of business by fixing rates of inputs in line with competing countries in the global market to create a level playing field, he suggested. Finance is imperative to run the wheels of industry and without it no one could even think to run industry. Government should set its priorities right and accord preferential treatment to boost the exports and generate industrial activities, he demanded.