PAKISTAN is seeking to build on the trade momentum created by its textile mills, which have pledged to supply the Philippine garment industry, according to an official from the Philippine Exporters Confederation, Inc. (PhilExport).  

Robert M. Young, PhilExport trustee for the textile, yarn and fabric sector, said in a statement over the weekend that Philippine Consul General in Karachi, Muhammad Imran Yousuf, and Economic Diplomatic officer Digna Khan are planning to arrange a visit by a Pakistan business delegation soon.

He had attended the ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations)-Pakistan Business Opportunities Conference at Lahore and Karachi between Aug. 7 and 11. 

Mr. Young, who is also the president of the Foreign Buyers Association of the Philippines, said Pakistan’s 10 biggest textile companies have pledged to supply textiles to the Philippine garment industry.  

“Mainly 100% cotton sheets and denim… as the Philippines has no such industry,” Mr. Young said.

According to Mr. Young, Pakistan’s textiles have a 15% to 20% cost advantage over those from other major suppliers.

“Pakistan has a lower production costs than China, India and Vietnam, while offering the same high-quality fabrics due to its skilled workers and yarn quality,” Mr. Young said.  

According to Mr. Young, Pakistan has expressed interest because of the advantages presented by upcoming free trade agreements, the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership, and Philippine economic reforms such as the amended Foreign Investment Act.

“The Philippines’ location is a critical entry point to over 600 million people in the ASEAN market and a natural gateway to the East Asian economies. It is likewise placed at the crossroads of international shipping and airlines,” Mr. Yousuf said in an e-mail to Mr. Young. — Revin Mikhael D. Ochave