India, Pakistan to Discuss Indian Cotton Export Ban
Officials from India and Pakistan will meet in Islamabad on July 15 to discuss a multitude of topics, possibly including India's recent ban on cotton exports.
May 20, 2010
Last week, India and Pakistan each agreed to send foreign ministers — India will be represented by External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna and Pakistan will be represented by Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi — to meet in Islamabad on July 15. They will discuss a multitude of topics, possibly including India’s recent ban on cotton exports.
In the meantime, local cotton industry leaders are voicing their opinions on the current situation.
In a report from Wall Street Journal/IndiaRealTime, Mohsin Ayub Mirza, a textile manufacturer in Karachi and chairman of the Pakistan Readymade Garments Manufacturers & Exporters Association called the ban “a slap on the face of free trade in the global economy.”
“Pakistan argues that India should honor contracts for 200,000 cotton bales for which letters of credit have already been issued, says Ikhtiar Baig, a Karachi-based garment producer and Adviser to the government on Textile Industry. ‘Pakistan is against India’s ban on cotton exports,’ Ikhtiar Baig added,” according to the Wall Street Journal/IndiaRealTime report.
Last week in Pakistan, the shortage of yarn in the local market — which some say is a consequence of the Indian export ban — led thousands of workers in Karachi and Faisalabad to call for an immediate ban on yarn exports. The textile value added sector demanded that the government either impose a complete ban or increase the rate of regulatory duty from 15 to 30 percent on the export of cotton yarn. They also proposed that the duration of the regulatory duty on yarn export should be at least one year.
The All Pakistan Textile Mills Association, the spinning sector and the Karachi Cotton Association (KCA), however, advocate the continuation of free import and export of the commodity.
In turn, India says it simply “imposed the ban to ensure its own garment and textile industry has adequate supplies after a poor global harvest of raw cotton, especially in China and the U.S.,” according to the Wall Street Journal/IndiaRealTime report.