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Nishat Chunian announces partial shutdown of operations

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  • Nishat Chunian says it would suspend operations at nearly one-fourth of its spindles.
  • Says will restart spindles as soon as market conditions improve.
  • Textile manufacturer latest to announce suspension of operations.

KARACHI: One of Pakistan’s largest textile companies Nishat Chunian Limited (NCL) has announced a partial shutdown of operations from next month due to the current market conditions, reported The News on Thursday.

In a statement to the Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX), the textile manufacturer informed that it would suspend operations at nearly one-fourth of its spindles temporarily until the market revamps.

“The company has decided to temporarily close 51,360 spindles after one month due to market conditions. However, the remaining units are operating normally. Company will restart these spindles as soon as market conditions improve,” the stock filing read.

Nishat Chunian has an installed capacity of 219,528 spindles and 2,880 rotors in its spinning division.

The textile manufacturer is the latest to announce operations suspension amid a prevailing economic downtrend in the country. Earlier this month, Kohinoor Spinning Mills Limited (KOSM) also announced the suspension of its operations giving multiple reasons.

“Due to prevailing global and economic downturn, overdue plant maintenance, high cost of production and low price and demand, it is not feasible to operate the production facility,” the KOSM said in a statement.

Pakistan has been facing multiple challenges, including low foreign exchange reserves, lack of foreign inflows, rising debt, energy shortages, and political uncertainty affecting the country’s economy, which is collectively pushing many companies to limit or shut down their operations.

Others companies that have recently announced the suspension of their operations include Indus Motor CompanyPak Suzuki Motor Company Ltd, Bolan Castings Limited and Baluchistan Wheels Ltd. Millat Tractors Limited has also been observing non-production days on Fridays since December 16.

Curbs by the government to reduce the size of its import bill have severely affected the export sector, especially textiles, which hold the lion’s share in the country’s exports. Delays in rebate and rising inflation have also contributed to a decline in Pakistan’s exports in recent months.

In November, the textile exports were down by 19% year on year. The country’s big manufacturing industries, including food, textile, petroleum oil, pharmaceutical and automobiles also reported a drop of 7.75% in October 2022, compared to the same month last year.

Last week, the All-Pakistan Textile Mills Association (APTMA) warned that the country’s textile exports could fall below $1 billion a month from 2023 onwards, seeking government intervention to save the sector from destruction.

“Across the country, the textile industry is currently using less than 50% of its capacity. If corrective action is not done quickly, a very significant number of jobs have already been lost and many more will do so,” APTMA said in a letter written to Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif.

Pakistan Hosiery Manufacturers and Exporters Association (PHMEA) also expressed serious concerns over a declining trend in textile exports in a statement last month. 

The textile exports had dropped by 1.34% to $5.941 billion during the first four months of July-Oct in the current fiscal year, against $6.021 billion in the same period of last year, the association said.

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Moody’s says the IMF programme will increase Pakistan’s foreign financing.

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Moody’s, a reputable international rating agency, has stated that Pakistan’s chances of acquiring funding will increase as a result of the recent agreement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF), which offers dependable sources for that purpose from both friendly countries and international financial institutions.

According to a recent Moody’s analysis on Pakistan’s economy, social unrest and tensions could result from Pakistan’s ongoing inflation. The country’s economic reforms may be hampered by increased taxes and potential changes to the energy tariff, it continued.

Moody’s, on the other hand, agrees that the coalition government headed by Shehbaz Sharif of the PML-N is in danger of failing to secure an election mandate, which may potentially undermine the successful and long-lasting execution of economic reforms.

The government’s capacity to proceed with economic changes may be hampered by societal unrest and poor governance, according to Moody’s.

In order to appease the IMF by fulfilling a prerequisite for authorising a rescue package, the government raised the basic tariff on electricity, which coincided with the most recent increase in fuel prices announced on Monday. This report was released by Moody’s.

Food costs have increased in the nation, where the vast majority is experiencing an unprecedented crisis due to the high cost of living, following the government’s earlier presentation of a budget that included a large increase in income tax for the salaried classes and the implementation of GST on commodities like milk.

The most recent comments were made following Islamabad’s achievement of a staff-level agreement for a $7 billion contract that spans 37 months and is contingent upon final approval by the IMF Executive Board.

It states that Pakistan will need foreign financing totaling about $21 billion in 2024–2025 and $23 billion in 2025–2026, meaning that the country’s present $9.4 billion in reserves won’t be sufficient to cover its needs.

Therefore, according to Moody’s, Pakistan is in an alarming position with regard to its external debt, and the next three to five years will be extremely difficult for the formulation and implementation of policies.

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Base Of bilateral relations: China And Pakistan Reiterate Their Support For CPEC

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China-Pakistan economic corridor is a major project of the Belt and Road Initiative, and both countries have reiterated their commitment to it. It remains a fundamental aspect of their bilateral relations.

Vice Chairman Zhao Chenxin of the National Development and Reform Commission of China and Minister Ahsan Iqbal of Planning and Development met in Beijing, where Ahsan Iqbal made this assurance.

The summit made clear how committed China and Pakistan are to advancing their strategic cooperative partnership in all weather conditions.

The focus of the discussion was on how the CPEC was going, with both parties reviewing project development and discussing how the agreement made at the leadership level will lead to the launch of an enhanced version of the CPEC.

In order to improve trade, connectivity, and socioeconomic growth in the area, they emphasised the need of CPEC projects.

The Ml-I Project, the KKH realignment, and the Sukkur-Hyderabad motorway—the last remaining segment of the Karachi-Peshawar motorway network—were all to be expedited.

Expanding the partnership’s horizons to include technology, innovation, education, connectivity, and renewable energy sources was another topic of discussion.

Specifically in the special economic zones being built under the Comprehensive Economic Cooperation (CPEX), Vice Chairman NDRC emphasised the possibility of China investing more in Pakistan.

In addition to expressing confidence in the ongoing success of the two nations’ collaboration, Zhao Chenxin reiterated China’s support for Pakistan’s development aspirations.

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Pakistani government raises petrol prices

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A recent announcement states that the price of petrol has increased by Rs 9.99 per litre, to Rs 275.60 per litre.

The cost of high-speed diesel has also increased significantly, rising by Rs 6.18 a litre. Diesel is now priced at Rs 283.63 a litre.

Furthermore, kerosene now costs Rs 0.83 more per gallon.

The cost of products and services is predicted to rise in response to the increase in petroleum prices, further taxing household budgets and jeopardizing the stability of the economy.

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