Prayers are being offering by the people all around
the country for more rains as the monsoon had brought a very little
water to the dry lands of the country.
The shortage of rain has however proved a blessing in
disguise for a section of the growers having a stake in cotton crop.
According to figures of cotton crop so far received it is estimated that
there will be a bumper cotton crop this year. Generally the crop
assessment revolves around 10 million bales in Pakistan. The bumper
cotton crop as being said by the farm and the government circles means
that size of the crop must be over 12 million bales to justify the word
of bumper crop.
Rain generally affects the cotton crop especially
when it is ready to be harvested, hence the timing of rain is highly
important for different crops. Despite all technological advancement to
forecast weather, rain however remains an unpredictable factor hence
beyond the human control.
Although the cotton yield is better than the last
year, yet there were fears that other major crops like rice and
sugarcane, which needs plenty of water, will be adversely affected due
to shortage of water. The fear was however dispelled by the Minister of
Water and Power by disclosing that sufficient arrangement of water in
stock has already been made to cater to the need of rice and sugar cane
crop for the areas producing cotton and sugarcane. The Kharif crop he
assured will not be affected due to shortage of water. He said that on
one hand there was shortage of rains while the snow melting at the
glaciers was also slow due to climatic change and low temperature even
in June and July this year. Effective water management is highly
important for the people and for the economy of the country. In order to
get optimum benefits of the available water resources we have no option
but to build water reservoirs to face challenges emerging out of such
situation in future as well.
He said due to slow melting of glacier and shortage
of water, the water flow in rivers were naturally below normal which
consequently has affected the water level in the two major dams in the
country. Currently, the water level at Tarbella was below 68 percent and
38 percent at Mangla Dams. This situation he said should be realized
those who are opposing the construction of the dams just to gain
political interests. It is a highly important matter and we would have
to develop a consensus to address the issue amicably the minister said.
Luckily, Pakistan is going to reap a rich cotton crop
this year especially at a time when the quota restrictions are going to
be completely phased out with the implementation of WTO regime from
January 2005. This means opening of the doors of the world market for
our textile products. Although the access of our products will be
enhanced in the WTO scenario, yet it will accompanied by fierce
competition with other textile export countries as well.
The situation calls for professionally handling of
the available indigenous cotton resources particularly by reinforcing
our productivity with optimum value addition both in terms of quality
and quantity of the products.
The textile industry has done a great job on its part
in expansion of the existing capacity, balancing, modernization and
balancing the industry with the induction of at $4 billion imports of
machinery and other accessories during last three four years.
The benefits so far achieved by the textile industry
in the export regime are actually the result of the effective
partnership between government and private sector. The government had
provided a great help to the industry by developing a friendly
environment for the local industry in the most significant market of the
European Union, which besides offering different duty incentives had
enhanced market accessibility for Pakistan textile products. On the
other hand the industry also responded accordingly by improving quality
of its products. The result of this partnership resulted in an all time
high textile exports, which touch the landmark of $8-9 billion in
2003-04, a remarkable performance in the given circumstance of the
country no doubt.
Encouraged with the results achieved by the textile
sector, the government has come out with an ambitious plan to develop
textile cities in all major textile related cities including at Karachi,
Lahore, and Faisalabad, besides improving the infrastructure of the
existing industrial zones.
The textile industry, which has assumed a front line
role in the economy of the country, however yet has to come out of the
conventional barriers of individual gains. It is the time that it should
give a map and direction to the sector with innovative ideas and
aggressive marketing to carve a respectable place for made in Pakistan
culture in the world market. The Information Minister Sh. Rashid has
rightly advised the industry to have their own TV channels to use it as
an effective tool for marketing of their products besides highly the
day-to-day problems faced by the industry. Since economy has to dominate
the reign of power in the coming days the role of the trade and industry
becomes more important as compared to the politicians because the
economic independence is the key for political stability of any society.