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Exporters decry gas price disparity

LAHORE: The Pakistan Textile Exporters Association (PTEA) on Saturday expressed grave concerns over the disparity in industrial gas prices within the country and slammed the discrimination faced by Punjab-based textile industry.

In a statement, PTEA Chairman Ajmal Farooq said recent reduction of Rs200 per mmBtu in industrial gas prices would make things difficult for Punjab-based textile industry which is already functioning on RLNG.

He said the decision would provide relief to only Sindh-based industries where gas is available round the year; whereas industries in Punjab are compelled to use Regasified Liquefied Natural Gas (RLNG) for their industrial needs and no relief has been announced.

He said after recently announced relief, system gas would be available to industries in Sindh at Rs400 per mmBtu; whereas Punjab-based industries are paying over Rs900 per mmBtu for RLNG.

With such a huge gap of 120 per cent in basic fuel’s prices, how could Punjab-based industry compete within the country, Farooq lamented.

PTEA will hold a press conference on Monday with textile bodies in the province to discuss a joint protest strategy.

Aptma concern

The All Pakistan Textile Mills Association Punjab Chairman Syed Ali Ahsan said reduction in price of system gas by Rs200 per mmBtu for industry is a step in the right direction but it will play havoc with the RLNG-reliant Punjab-based textile industry.

While appreciating the export friendly approach of the Economic Coordination Committee for a reduction in cost of doing business, he has also extended a word of caution by highlighting that it would make the RLNG 60pc more expensive, which the Punjab-based textile industry is already getting at 45pc higher rate against the system gas price.

He said some 70pc of the textile industry is based in Punjab, which would suffer a heavy price differential against the industry in other provinces.

Courtesy : Dawn News



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