ISLAMABAD, Oct 19: Pakistan’s export of textile and clothing rebounded in September 2012 after witnessing a slump for at least one year, mainly owing to a slight surge in demand from recession-hit key markets of Europe and United States.

Textile and clothing exports witnessed double digit growth of 12.91 per cent in September from a year ago, suggested data of Pakistan Bureau of Statistics released here on Friday.

The unprecedented growth was mainly driven by substantial increase in export proceeds of readymade garments, towels, and other low value products, like cotton yarn and cotton cloth, etc.

Former Chairman of Readymade Garments Association of Pakistan Masood Naqi told Dawn that growth in export of value-added products was the outcome of three main factors witnessed in the past few months.

He said that growth in exports was the outcome of spillover effects from China and Taiwan’s labour issue. About two or three per cent spillover from China alone was more than enough for Pakistan’s exporters to meet it.

Secondly, Mr Naqi said that the announcement of waiver on 75 products from Europe Union also encouraged European buyers to re-develop contacts in Pakistan.

He said major European buyers are eying to yield benefits in case EU granted Pakistan GSP plus status in 2014.

American buyers also re-establishing contacts with Pakistan’s textile and clothing exporters after disruption in supply from Egypt.

“Buyers are approaching Pakistan in bulk which is beyond our imaginations,” Mr Naqi.

As a result of performance of textile and clothing sector, overall exports also witnessed 2.95 per cent growth in the first quarter (July-Sept) this year as it stood at $3.271 billion this year as against $3.178 billion over the corresponding period last year.

A sector-wise analysis showed that export of readymade garments went up by 26.5 per cent, knitwear 0.95 per cent, and towels 14.47 per cent in September this year over last year.

Export of low value-added products like cotton yarn was up by 40.79 per cent, cotton cloth 14.38 per cent, yarn other than cotton yarn 90.44 per cent, made-ups 7.30 per cent and other textile material 138.92 per cent in September this year over same month last year.Former chairman of All-Pakistan Textile Mills Association Gohar Ijaz told Dawn that persistent supply of gas for five consecutive days in July-September period to textile sector produced the desired results.

He said that growth in yarn and fabric exports was mainly because of improved energy supply.

Mr Ijaz said that 80 per cent textile products were manufactured in Punjab.

The full capacity utilisation of production caused growth in export of home textile — towels and bedwear as well.

This shows that in case of uninterrupted supply of energy, export of textile products would increase manifold.

However, export of raw cotton declined by 8.05 per cent in September this year.

Cotton production is expected to increase this year following arrival of new crop in the market. Cotton crop arrival will start from October.

Contrary to this, over 22 per cent increase was also witnessed in terms of rupee owing to depreciation of rupee against the dollar in the past few months, indicating that the fall in the health of rupee supported Pakistani textile and clothing products to penetrate in the international markets.

At the same time, there was a 17.45 per cent increase in import of machinery in the value-added sector to increase quality and capacity of production.

This indicates that local manufacturers were also expanding their production capacity.

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