Jan 01 -
0.4m bales of cotton shipped in four months
Around 0.4 million bales of cotton with an estimated value of
$70 million have been physically shipped during the last four months, official
sources said on Tuesday.
According to details the private exporters in total made a
physical shipment of around 0.270 million bales and TCP 0.125 million bales.
With free cotton trade policy higher exports could have been
achieved, but soaring prices in domestic market deterred exporters from entering
into more commitments.
The Export Promotion Bureau (EPB) in total, registered around
1.1 million bales contracts from 1999-2000 crop, out of these 0.309 million
bales contracts were cancelled and a balance of 0.787 million bales contracts
During last four months (Sept to Dec 2000) a total of 0.385
million bales were registered with EPB. Out of these 0.111 million bales were of
1999-2000 crop and 0.274 million bales of 2000-2001 crop.
The official figures further disclose that during Sept 1,
1999 to August 31, 2000, the private sector raw cotton exports through Karachi
Port stood at 0.338 million bales and of TCP 0.236 million bales. A nominal
amount of 1,525 bales were exported through Multan dry port.
The official estimates for current crop as 10.2 million bales
is being considered to be close to a reality particularly, when these figures,
as based on last year's harvest which was short by one million bales.
Cotton experts estimates current crop size close to that of
last year when officially recorded harvest was put at 9.7 million
Duty free imports show 86.1pc rise
Duty-free import of consumer and industrial goods recorded an
increase in value from Rs44.26 billion in July-November 1999 to Rs82.39 billion,
during the same period this year, showing an increase of Rs38.12 billion, or
86.10 per cent.
This phenomenal increase was caused by a steep rise in duty-
free import of petroleum products, the value of which was Rs7.65 billion in
July-November last year, while it was Rs47.85 billion this year, showing an
increase of Rs40 billion, or 84 per cent increase.
This also reflected an alarming growth in the subsidized
supply of petroleum products to the state sector organizations. Petroleum oil
crude imported duty-free this year was of Rs29.082 billion this year, while it
valued Rs4.762 billion last year. Non-crude petroleum imports duty-free valued
Rs2.854 billion last year but Rs18.859 billion this year.
Exporters allowed to transfer quota
Ministry of Commerce on Thursday announced Textile Quota
Management Policy-2001, carrying rewards on one hand to encourage exporters and
penalties on the other to bring about transparency and fair play.
Under the new policy, the specific categories, for which
exceptional flexibility of 4,000 MT allowed by European Union is to be used,
would be determined by Quota Supervisory Council (QSC) and communicated to the
Export Promotion Bureau (EPB).
Following acceptance of the European Union, the EPB shall
allow the textile associations the use of exceptional flexibility on notified
terms and conditions.
For good performance, all eligible exporters would get
additional quota as a reward.
In addition the government has also accepted a major demand
of textile exporters by allowing them to transfer their official quota as well
as one purchased from the open market.
Free cotton trade policy to continue
Current policy of free import and export of cotton would
continue and no government intervention would be made in this regard.
This was decided at a meeting of the Federal Textile Board
chaired by the Minister for Commerce, Industries and Production Abdul Razzaq Dawood.
The Board would continuously monitor progress for investment
in spinning for import of machinery under BMR-expansion or new units, the
meeting decided adding, APTMA would take the proposal of Commercial Warehousing
Scheme with the banks at their own.
If needed, government intervention would be solicited for
support from the State Bank, the meeting further decided.
Export figures to improve
Export Promotion Bureau (EPB) Chairman Tariq Ikram has hoped
that the export figures for December would show an improvement.
Addressing a seminar on Thursday, he said Pakistan's exports
grew 12 per cent during the first five months of the year 2000-01 over the
corresponding period last year, but lagged behind the target by $250 million. He
said the restructuring of the EPB had been completed with a view to increase
PSO-KPC deal on diesel import
Pakistan State Oil (PSO) is discussing the import of three
million tons of diesel per year with Kuwait Petroleum Company (KPC) under a term
The two companies are trying to finalize the agreement and it
is expected to be signed within two weeks," a senior official in the PSO
told on Thursday.
"We intend to sign a term contract agreement for two
years and to be effective from January 1, 2001," the official said.
Import of three million tons of diesel will cater to more
than 70 per cent of country's requirement, while the rest will be managed by the
two foreign oil marketing companies — Shell Pakistan Limited and Caltex
The term contract agreement with KPC is considered an initial
step towards deregulation of diesel imports followed by price deregulation in
the second phase.
Sugar industry seeks higher import duty
Pakistan's sugar industry has urged the government to raise
the import duty on the commodity to 40 per cent from 15 per cent to restrict
imports, trade officials said on Wednesday.
"We have sent a request to the government which gives a
comparative evaluation of how cheap imported sugar is being dumped into
Pakistan," Khadim Ali Qazilbash, secretary-general of the Pakistan Sugar
Mills Association, told.