In terms of skill base in the garment industry, Pakistan is way behind Sri Lanka and Bangladesh, Firoz Rasul, the president of the Aga Khan University, says. He was speaking as the chief guest at the 17th convocation of the Textile Institute of Pakistan (TIP) held at, Bin Qasim (Ghakkar Phatak). Rasul said he admired TIP’s work, significance and its impact. He added that textile was one of the most important sectors of the country and considered the backbone of Pakistan’s economy.
Pakistan was the eighth largest exporter of textile in Asia, fourth largest producer of cotton and third largest consumer of cotton in the world. It is also the world’s second largest cotton yarn exporter and third largest cotton cloth manufacturer and exporter, he informed. He appreciated the fact that the sector provided employment to about 40 per cent of the industrial labour force and accounted for eight per cent of the total GDP.
However, Pakistan lacked quality and innovation in engineering and technology development. Rasul also highlighted the energy crisis, shortage of gas supply and power cuts for the reducing number of textile mills in the country. He observed production capability was low because of obsolete machinery and technology while in the long term, cotton as a crop would not be viable in Pakistan with its scarce water resources.