The Pakistan Readymade Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (PRGMEA) is threatening sit-ins and protests if power supplies are not restored to their industry.
The electricity company told the textile industry that 50% cuts will be needed during winter months, due to power shortages. Gas supplies have been suspended on weekdays in order to meet the heating needs of households. Electricity cuts will average 6-14 hours per day at more than 300 plants in Punjab.
More than 75% of Pakistan’s textile industry is located in Punjab and surrounding regions. Steady energy supplies for the plants, which run primarily on natural gas, are only guaranteed nine months of the year.
According to Ejaz Khokhar, former chairman of the PRGMEA, the energy shortages have cut garment production in half, jeopardizing the industry’s ability to meet its commitments for the Christmas season.
Gohar Ejaz, former chairman of the All Pakistan Textile Mills Association, says that export shipments worth as much as $3 billion will be affected from December through February.