NON-AVAILABILITY OF RAW SKIN, HIDE CASUES CLOSURE OF UNITS
KARACHI: 2nd August, 2011: Mr. Khurshid Alam, Chairman, Pakistan Tanners’ Association expressed his deep concerned during a press statement over the non-availability of raw skin and hide has forced most of the small and medium tanneries in Pakistan to close down their operations, manufacturing units.
This situation has left almost 200,000 people jobless and PTA members apprehend more people would be unemployed if export and smuggling of live animals from Pakistan continued.
Keeping in view these facts there is a dire need to put a permanent ban on export of live animals and wet blue leather from Pakistan, chairman PTA Khurshid Alam said.
In a letter to Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani, the PTA said although Ministry of Commerce has imposed a ban on export of live animals for three months but further repercussions would come if permanent ban was not put on export of live animals and wet blue.
Agha Saiddain, Chairman PTA Skin and Hide said that around 20,000 live animals were still being smuggled from the country on a daily basis.
“According to Federal Bureau of Statistics, export stood at $1.220 billion in 2002-08, $0.959 billion in 2008-09 and $0.862 billion in 2009-10,” he added.
Agha said though the exports of 2010-11 have shown an upward trend but this was mainly because of higher prices of leather in international market and quantitative increase was not much.
The smuggling of live animals a month was inflicting a loss of more than Rs 7.5 billion to national exchequer besides causing huge raw material shortage to second biggest value-added export sector of the country.
Leather industry of Pakistan in manufacturing sector is providing jobs to 500,000 people and contributing 5 percent in manufacturing GDP—which depends on byproduct of meat and beef.
The leather sector was facing a shortage of raw material severely for meeting the domestic as well as the export demand of leather products.
Alam hoped that early announcement for imposing a complete ban on export of basic raw material and control on live animals’ smuggling from Pakistan would facilitate the local industry in procuring the raw materials for meeting its export demands for fetching precious foreign exchange.
The burning issue of the export of live animals legally from Pakistan to Iran and Afghanistan also came under discussion in the MoC’s meeting.
Due to the exorbitantly high prices of beef and meat an average Pakistani family cannot afford to eat meat and beef as a result Pakistan was declared protein deficient nation by UNIDO.