Pakistan Cotton Ginners Association (PCGA) Chairman Mian Mehmood Ahmed on Friday urged the federal government to withdraw taxes on the oilcake (Khal) and refund claims of ginners on the priority basis by resolving the issue of SRO-188 as the main hurdle in the path of their business activities. He delivered his maiden speech at the annual general meeting and said that the meeting would be convened thrice every year following demand of any member for bridging the gap between ginners.He stressed on the need of bringing revolutionary changes in the PCGA for supporting competitive leadership which could lead ginners towards a better path. He said that the rulers had failed to resolve the problem of certified and qualitative cotton seed for enhancing cotton’s production. “Pakistan’s per acre yield is even less than its neighbouring countries as we could not meet the set target of 15 million bales whereas India had surpassed figure of 37 million bales,” he added. The newly elected chairman invited suggestions and proposals from members to frame a comprehensive strategy for taking a solid step for survival of ginning industry. Meanwhile, PCGA’s general body unanimously approved Rs 10 million as fund for construction of dams. He also announced to constitute a committee which would issue figures of fortnightly arrival of cotton in ginneries. Mehr Muhammad Ashraf would be convener of the committee while Salman Maqbool and Malik Talat Suhail would be members of the committee.PCGA chairman would not interfere into affairs of the committee. Mian Mehmood Ahmed said that the State Bank of Pakistan should grant incentives to ginners and a bailout package so that they could stand on its own. Former chairman Amanullah Qureshi suggested that cotton rate must be issued from Multan just like Karachi. Another former chairman of PCGA Mukhtar Ahmed Baloch warned ginners that the incumbent government was planning to impose taxes on ginning industry and hence the new body should be taking pre-cautionary measures. Another former chairman Shehzad Ali Khan emphasised on unity among members to cope with the challenges ahead. “New body should ensure payment of refund claims and withdrawal of SRO-188,” he said.Gopal Devnani shed light on problems being confronted by the ginning industry. Besides, Haji Hafeez Anwar, Mian Akhtar Javed, Ashiq Rehmani, Malik Muhammad Shafiq, Malik Talat Suhail and Haji Muhammad Ibrahim also spoke on the occasion, and stressed on the need for launching another awareness session on ‘adopting new technology to reduce consumption of electricity’. After announcement of the newly elected body, Haji Muhammad Akram and Haji Muhammad Ibrahim administered oath from Mian Mehmood Ahmed. Published in Daily Times, September 29th 2018.