KARACHI: In all the hurrah of stagnating textile exports from Pakistan, one company Artistic Denim Mills is setting itself apart from its contemporaries by having doubled its production and setting up a new factory in Karachi.
Artistic Denim Mills supplies renowned international brand names such as Zara and Next based in Europe. CEO of Artistic Denim Mills Limited, Faisal Ahmed remains bullish but highlighted his company started by making garments around 25 years ago rather than exporting only shipping yarn or fabric.
In an interview to Bloomberg, Mr. Ahmed said “we have been able to get many orders that used to go to Turkey earlier.”
The textile industry which has mostly remained confined and static, which has been a major part of Pakistan’s economy over the last few decades.
The country ranks among the top five growers in the world and has mostly transformed cotton into thread and fabric, which is then exported to other Asian countries, which then manufacture the final garment, said Bloomberg.
The government is under serious pressure before upcoming elections in July 2018, as foreign exchange reserves dwindle and calls for revival of exports usher. There are apprehensions that Pakistan may seek another bailout from Internal Monetary Fund later in the year.
Textile key industry forms a significant part of exports and provides more than half of all overseas shipments.
Pakistan has lagged its regional competitors from 2005 to 2016, with exports only increasing a meagre 27 percent compared to Bangladesh 276 percent surge and 445 percent in Vietnam during the corresponding period as per World Bank data.
Unlike its regional competitors, Pakistan houses a huge benefit of homegrown cotton which it can exploit.
Artistic Denim has defied the odds and its sales have risen ironically as Pakistan’s exports dwindled. The company has pursued premium brands based in Los Angeles which pay higher for smaller deliveries and design changes instead of bulk orders.
It believes this will help in revenues to surge to Rs8 billion ($72 million) in financial year ending June 2018 with production from new factory expected to fuel more sales.
Mr. Ahmed said to Bloomberg “Pakistan’s denim is on an upward trend, despite the larger textile industry being in trouble. Pakistan has a tremendous opportunity.”