Lahore (Muhammad Yasir) The Chairman, Pakistan Footwear Manufacturing Association (PFMA), Mr. Imran Malik issued media statement in which he appeals Prime Minister, Chief Minister and Ministry of Commerce to reconsider their decision of announcing 10 days Holidays for Eid-ul-Fitreffective from 8th May’21 onward, which would ultimately be a complete shutdown for Footwear Industry, which is still in survival plight due to Covid-19. Current COVID-19 situation has already brought Industry production to halt and this long break will further aggravate the situation to complete export order and procure Raw material due to closer of banks.
PFMA Chairman stated that Our exporters faced great difficulties during lockdown last year because they could not timely comply to their export orders. For any Industry survival, it is important to retain Foreign buyer that is only possible with timely delivery of ordered goods. If buyers once lost faith on producer it is difficult to regain it. The long closure of markets and banks will not only delay our exports it will also cause delay in procurement of raw materials. If Government is considering to allow only manufacturers with confirm export orders during holidays, it will not solve their problem until ancillary industry is also allowed to operate during holidays. More over local footwear industry stocks for the Eid festivity will remain unsold hence the production will last in shelves which is also a disadvantage of extended holidays.
Under these circumstances, PFMA humbly request the government to consider positively for the reduction of announced holidays on the eve of Eid-ul-Fitr for 4 days only which would enable Footwear Sector of Pakistan to complete export orders timely and retain Foreign buyer confidence in them and local footwear sales should not hurt in this high buying season of footwear industry. Pakistan Footwear Industry has picked up the phase to enter into competition despite COVID-19 constrains but such long holidays will ruin their reputation abroad and bring financial hardships for Footwear producers.