ISLAMABAD: President Asif Ali Zardari on Monday advised the government to work out a plan to ensure uninterrupted gas supply to the industry in Punjab for five days a week commencing from the first week of May.
He was talking to a delegation of All Pakistan Textiles Mills Association (APTMA) here at the Bilawal House.
Briefing media representatives, Spokesperson to the president Senator Farhatullah Babar stated that the president during the meeting said the textile industry was playing an important role in the country's exports.
He said there was a need to adopt out of the box solutions to address the issues being faced by the industry and to enhance value added exports of textiles.
The president, while responding to the problems being faced by the textile mills and other industries, appreciated the contribution of the textile sector in the economic progress and prosperity of the country.
The president assured government's full support to the APTMA towards realisation of their full potential and the export targets.
The President emphasized the need for closer cooperation between the public sector research centres and the manufacturers and producers in private sector so as to create an enabling environment for enhancing productivity.
He said research efforts for developing new varieties of cotton with higher production potential, diverse and distinct characteristics must be geared up for meeting the future demand of cotton.
The President said negligible investment in the past few years had cost the country its technological edge in the basic textiles which it used to enjoy once over the neighbouring countries.
“We need to reverse this trend so as to regain our position,” the president said.
He said that there was a wide variation in the yields of common and progressive farmers which needed to be filled in a short span to increase cotton production.
The president said that a meeting of State Bank governor with the representative of APTMA and the textile ministry should also be held to work out plans for crop insurance.
He said modern mapping technology could be effectively employed in the crop insurance and to offset the possibility of wrong claims.
APTMA Chairman Mohsin Aziz briefed the meeting on the prospects of increased export of textile products and also apprised him of the problems being faced by the textile sector.
The President said the government was making all efforts to address power shortage issue of the textile industry. He said the present challenges call for greater and active partnership of the private and the public sector so as to adopt consensus based policies and to overcome issues being faced by the country.
During the meeting a number of participants put forth their suggestions for overcoming the current challenges faced by the industry.
Those present during the meeting included Mohsin Aziz, APTMA Chairman, Gohar Ijaz, former Chairman, Ahsan Bashir Chairman Punjab Zone, Sheikh Muhammad Akbar Vice Chairman Centre, Yasin Siddique, Chairman Sindh and Balochistan Zones, Asif Inam Chairman (Cotton Committee) and other executive members of the association.
Senior Minister for Commerce Makhdoom Amin Fahim, Minister for IT Raja Pervaiz Ashraf, Minister for Petroleum Dr. Asim Hussain, Minister for Textile Industry Makhdoom Shahabuddin, Minister for Water and Power Syed Naveed Qamar, Minister for Interior Rehman Malik, federal secretaries and other senior officials of the departments concerned were also present during the meeting.