Pakistan lost textile exports of $250 million in December due to closure of gas supply to the sector in Punjab for 15 days.
All Pakistan Textile Mills Association (APTMA) Executive Director confirmed the loss which will “never be recovered.”
However, the Ministry of Energy restored gas to the sector on December 29, though with less gas supply by mid-January, while pledging that it will be increased up to the optimum level after the peak winter season was over.
However, the gas being supplied to the export sector is less than 75mmcfd despite the fact that the industry is purchasing gas at $9 per MMBTU instead of $6.5 mmcfd during the winters.
Meanwhile, Commerce Ministry insiders said that textile mills in Punjab are not getting smooth supply of electricity from the national grid due to interruptions, causing huge losses to the industry which may go up to $250 million to $400 million per month.
APTMA also agitated against interruptions in electricity supply in a letter to Abdul Razak Dawood, Adviser to PM on Commerce and Textiles.
The complaint mentioned abrupt interruptions in electricity supply between January 1 to 5. Each interruption causes waste of half an hour and up to two hours in restarting the machinery, resulting in losing material and rendering capacity grossly underutilised, the letter said.
It said that mills are currently running at 80 percent capacity, which signifies 20 percent loss of exports. And this adds up to losses between $250-$400 million in exports every month.
The APTMA built its case based on the grid performance in various electric power distribution companies (DISCOs). The grid daily report suggests that the electricity is full of interruptions, low and high voltages and tripping, the letter concluded.
Shahid said reportedly new machinery installed in many mills under new investments went out of order to sudden surge in voltages.