Cotton and textile sector, the
mainstay of Pakistan's economy has so far produced unprecedented results
and is sure to achieve new heights in the export regime at the end of
the current financial year next month.
The entire cotton and textile sector
including cotton yarn, fabrics, towel, bed wear, knitwear and garments
bettered the performance of the previous year and the overall exports
earnings by all these segments of the cotton regime are likely to
culminate somewhere $7 billion during the years.
So far, during the 10 months of the
current financial year from July 2002 to April 2003 this sector earned
around $5.644 billion as compared to 4.661 billion in the corresponding
period of last year which shows an increase of 21.1 per cent over the
Area wise export performance of the
first 10 months shows that cotton yarn gained by 3.2 percent to $792
million, cotton fabrics showed growth of 16.3 per cent to $1.05 billion,
knitwear earned $875 million indicating growth of 30.4 per cent and bed
wear fetched $1billion indicating growth of 37.2 per cent, towel exports
increased by 30 per cent and ready-made garments earned $880 million
against $709 million in the corresponding period last year. Active
players in the industry are of the view that the textile exports would
continue to grow even after the implementation of WTO rules bringing an
end to textile quota regime in 2005. Their assessment for textile growth
was based on the changing scenario of textile industry in the developed
world including US and Japan which getting out of the textiles to
With the increase in exports, the
demand for raw cotton was naturally increased in the country. However,
the farming sector producing better cotton crop over 10 million bales to
cater to the needs of the industry. It is surprising to note that even
drought like conditions persisting over the last three years; the
overall agriculture output including cotton produce registered a better
Commenting on the situation, Akbar
Hashwani, President Karachi Cotton Association observed that the drought
conditions in a sense proved as the blessing in disguise, as the
shortage of water resulted lowering the water-table which helped
improving per acre yield of the water-logged agriculture lands.
Currently, the textile industry is
engaged in diversifying the range of products as well as enhancing value
addition of the cotton produced in the country. Presently there are 419
registered textile units comprising of 322 spinning units, 44 weaving
units and 53 composite units. The textile industry contributes over 60
per cent to Pakistan's exports, over 38 percent to employment and over
20 per cent to value-added production by manufacturing.
Importance of Textile Sector
From almost non-existence at the time
of creation of Pakistan in 1947, the textile industry has grown into the
largest and most significant economic sector of Pakistan. It contributes
over 60% to Pakistan's exports, over 38% to employment and 20% to
value-added production by manufacturing. This domination role of the
Ttextile sector in the economy of Pakistan, for better or worse will
continue till such time that other economic activities achieve
significant growth and development. The industry will continue to play
an important role in economy of Pakistan for the following reasons:
Pakistan is one of the four largest
cotton growers in the world. Availability of large quantity (around 10
million bales per annum) of reasonable quality is the basis of the
development and sustenance of the local Textile Industry.
Textile industry is labour-intensive.
Pakistan, has the advantage of a large labor force with one of the
lowest wages in the world.
Textile production will continue to grow in the
developing countries since the developed countries are giving it up in
favor of more technology-oriented and value-added economic activities.