ISLAMABAD: Textile and clothing exports grew 26 per cent year-on-year to $9.38 billion in the first half of this fiscal year, mainly on the back of a massive depreciation in the rupee’s value and a steady rise in global demand.

The year-on-year growth in December was recorded at 15.89pc, data released by the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS) showed on Monday.

The government has yet to announce the much-awaited textile and apparel policy pending for the last few years. Several drafts have been presented before the Economic Coordination Committee, but the policy has yet to be approved.

In the budget 2021-22, the government drastically reduced duty and taxes on the imports of several hundred raw materials to bring down the input cost of exportable products. Liquidity issues were also resolved to a considerable extent by a timely release of refunds and the payment of cash subsidies.

Data showed that ready-made garment exports jumped 22.93pc in value and but the quantity data was not available for the period during July-December, while the exports of knitwear edged up 35.21pc in value but dipped 0.73pc in quantity. Bedwear exports grew 19.04pc in value and 20.24pc in quantity.

Towel exports were up by 17.54pc in value and 7.15pc in quantity, whereas those of cotton cloth rose by 21.35pc in value and 12pc in quantity.

Among primary commodities, cotton yarn exports surged 52.33pc and those of yarn made from material other than cotton by 110pc. The exports of made-up articles — excluding towels — rose by 11.36pc, while those of tents, canvas and tarpaulin dipped by 9.18pc during the period under review.

The export of raw cotton jumped 197pc to $1.76m during the six months compared to last year.

The import of textile machinery jumped 88.24pc in July-December, reflecting expansion or modernisation in the textile industry.

To bridge the shortfall in the domestic sector, the industry imported 377,573 tonnes of raw cotton in July-December compared to 331,583 tonnes a year ago, an increase of 13.88pc.

Similarly, the import of synthetic fibre dropped 10.32pc as the industry imported 216,513 tonnes this year compared to 241,429 tonnes. The import of synthetic and artificial silk yarn fell 5.30pc to 199,975 tonnes from 211,160 tonnes in the year-ago period.

The import of worn clothing recorded a growth of 76pc to 504,915 tonnes from 286,848 tonnes last year.

During the six-month period, the country’s overall exports posted a year-on-year growth of around 24.91pc to reach $15.13bn from $12.11bn in the same period last year.

Published in Dawn, January 18th, 2022

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