ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s exports of textile and clothing rebounded in March mainly due to value-added sectors and posted a growth of 30.4 per cent from a year ago, showed data released by the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS) on Friday.
The export value of these sectors edged up to $1.355 billion in March from $1.039bn over the corresponding month of last year. Growth in exports of value-added sectors contributed to an increase in overall exports from the sectors.
In February, textile and clothing exports shrank 3.12pc on a year-on-year basis.
The July-March figures showed that growth in textile and clothing exports came from the value-added sector. The value of exports reached $11.35bn in the July-March period this year as against $10.41bn over the corresponding months of last year, showing a growth of 9.06pc.
The Economic Coordination Committee of the Cabinet has recently allowed import of cotton and cotton yarn from India but the same decision was reversed in the Federal Cabinet.
To address the issue of shortage of cotton yarn for value-added sector, the ECC in its last meeting allowed duty-free import of cotton yarn until June 30, 2021. It will be difficult for the value-added sector to retain the orders in case government did not facilitate the timely availability of cotton yarn in the domestic market.
Product-wise details reveal exports of ready-made garments up by 22.9pc in value, followed by knitwear 49.64pc, bedwear 43.71pc and towels 20.95pc during the month under review. Pakistan and China’s exports of apparel exports posted a substantial growth to United States compared to regional countries during the past few months.
The government has already abolished duty and taxes on industrial raw materials as well as paying off past pending refunds to exporters. The devaluation of the rupee and lower interest rate accelerated industrial growth, especially in the export-oriented industries.
According to the PBS data, the export of cotton yarn posted growth of 39pc in March from a year ago, followed by cotton cloth 8.7pc, and cotton carded 100pc. The export of yarn other than cotton yarn also recorded a growth of 56.87pc during the month under review.
In the non-value-added sectors, exports of tents, canvas dipped 34.09pc followed by raw cotton by 100pc. However, the export of art and silk increased by 32.72pc, made-up articles excluding towels, bedwear 12.48pc and other textile products 41.03pc during the month under review.
The overall exports in March up by 30.62pc to $2.36bn in March 2021 against $1.81bn over the corresponding month last year.
Between July and March, the overall exports reached $18.68bn as against $17.44bn over the corresponding months of last year, indicating a growth of 7.13pc.
In the nine months of this fiscal year, the import of textile machinery posts a paltry growth of 7.72pc. This indicates that the industry has started importing textile machinery as part of modernisation or expansion in the sector.
To bridge the shortfall in the domestic sector, the industry imported 624,945 tonnes of raw cotton between July to March against 338,244 tonnes last year, showing an increase of 84.76pc. Similarly, the import of synthetic fibre posts growth of 52.29pc as industry imports 346,254 tonnes this year as against 227,365 tonnes.
The import of synthetic and artificial silk yarn stood at 316,656 metric tons this year as against 210,810 metric tons last year, showing an increase of 50.21pc. The import of worn clothing recorded a growth of 55.22pc to 487,107 tonnes this year as against 313,818 tonnes last year.
Published in Dawn, April 17th, 2021