PAKISTAN: Clothing exports held up in transporters strike
Thousands of garment export containers are being held up in various cities across Pakistan following a strike by transport workers that has so far lasted for ten days.
The truckers have been protesting against harassment and kidnapping of drivers in the province of Sindh.
Khalid Khan, president of the United Goods Transporters Alliance (UGTA), has threatened that the strike will continue unless the problems are solved. But the authorities are being to intervene for bring the protest to an end.
Ahsan Bashir, chairman of the All Pakistan Textile Mills Association (APTMA), claims that textile and clothing goods worth US$500m have been held up on their way to Karachi Port since 5 December.
Exporters are already facing serious challenges due to energy shortages and high production costs. The strike is adding to their costs as cargoes are being sent by air, according to M Javed Bilwani, chairman of the Pakistan Hosiery Manufacturers and Exporters Association (PHMA).
Over 75% of Pakistan's textile and clothing industry is located in the northern provinces of Punjab, Azad Kashmir and Khyber Pakhtun Khwa, which send all export shipments through the southern port at Karachi.
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