The Ministry of Textile Industry arranged briefing on October 28th, 2016 in the Committee Room of the Ministry to brief the Media about the 75th Plenary Meeting of International Cotton Advisory Committee (ICAC).
Mr. Hassan Iqbal, Secretary, Ministry of Textile Industry and his team made a comprehensive presentation and informed that International Cotton Advisory Committee (ICAC) is an association of Governments of cotton producing, consuming and trading countries, established in 1939, with its headquarters at Washington DC. At present 30 countries, including Pakistan since July 1948, are members of the ICAC. (List of the Member Governments is placed as Annex-I).
Mr. Hassan further said that till date 74 Plenary Meetings of the ICAC have been held in various member countries. The 75th Plenary Meeting of the International Cotton Advisory Committee (ICAC) is scheduled from 30th October to 04th November, 2016 at Islamabad (previously 13th Plenary Meeting was held in Pakistan in 1951). Around 400 international/local delegates are going to attend the subject meeting. He updated that till now around 130 international delegates from 30 countries have been confirmed. Further, the international delegates have started to arrive in Islamabad and for this purpose two special facilitation counters have been established at Islamabad Airport. Moreover, special facilitation desks have also been established at the various hotels.
The Secretary, Ministry of Textile Industry said that the mission of the ICAC is to assist governments in fostering a healthy world cotton economy. The role of the ICAC is to raise awareness of emerging issues, provide information relevant to the solving of problems and to foster cooperation in the achievement of common objectives. The ICAC provides statistics on world cotton production, consumption, trade and stocks and to identify emerging changes in the structure of the world cotton market, serves as a clearing house for technical information about cotton and cotton textiles, serves as an objective forum for discussion of cotton matters of international significance and represents the international cotton industry before UN agencies and other international organizations. The ICAC is the premier source of international data on the world cotton industry.
Moreover, it was stated by Mr. Hassan Iqbal Secretary, Ministry of Textile Industry that Plenary meetings of the ICAC provide a forum for the discussion of international issues of importance to the world cotton industry, and provide opportunities for industry and government leaders from producing, consuming and trading countries to consult on matters of mutual concern. As the International Commodity Body for Cotton and Cotton Textiles, the ICAC plays a crucial role in the achievement of broad objectives in the cotton industry, and all industry participants and government officials with a concern about the health of the sector are invited to participate in ICAC activities.
Being one of the most important events in the recent history of Pakistan, the top leadership of the country is going to inaugurate and chair various sessions of the 75th Plenary Meeting of the ICAC. Cotton and textile value chain is lifeline of Pakistan’s economy, absorbing over 40% of its industrial workforce and earning over 60% of the foreign exchange for the country. The textiles and clothing sector is symbol of Pakistan’s manufacturing excellence. This will add to the commercial benefits for Pakistan in cotton and textiles. This event is also important for Pakistan because it will provide an excellent opportunity to build a soft and positive image of Pakistan among international community, especially in current scenario.
Title of the 75th Plenary Meeting is “Emerging Dynamics in Cotton: Enhancing Sustainability in Cotton Value Chain.” Number of open and breakout sessions, in coherence with the subject title, will be held along the plenary sessions, on various topics of importance to cotton and its value chain.
Along the formal sessions of the subject meeting number of side events have been organized which will provide an opportunity to the participants, especially the international, to learn about the rich and hospitable culture and heritage of Pakistan, visit the second most beautiful and scenic capital of world and know about the manufacturing excellence of Pakistan in textile and clothing sector.
Mr. Hassan said that the Ministry of Textile Industry has arranged cultural programs and city tour for the international delegates. Moreover, after the conference as one of the requirement, the international delegation would visit Faisalabad, the hub of textiles, where they would be visiting Chawala Ginning Factory, Ayub Agriculture Research Institute, University of Agriculture, Faisalabad and local cultural show arranged by the Faisalabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry. On their way back, the international delegates would also visit the Khewra Salt Mines and Katas Temple. Such activities would improve the soft image of the country.
In his concluding remarks Mr. Hassan Iqbal said that textile associations have also been participating and attending this meeting and many important sessions would be chaired by the various textile associations namely, All Pakistan Textile Mills Association, Pakistan Readymade Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association, Karachi Cotton Association and Pakistan Cotton Ginners Association. Importantly the Secretary updated that progressive growers including a lady grower would also be chairing a session. This shows the competence of the growers in the field of cotton. He further said that various departments of the Ministry such as Pakistan Central Cotton Committee, Pakistan Cotton Standards Institute and our textile associations including All Pakistan Handmade Carpet Manufacturers and Exporters Association, Pakistan Readymade Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association etc have been setting up stalls to showcase their products to the international delegation.
At the end, it was informed by Mr. Hassan Iqbal, Secretary, Ministry of Textile Industry that ICAC Executive Director along with his team has arrived Pakistan and a comprehensive briefing on the arrangement have been made. Mr. Jose Sette, the Executive Director has shown satisfaction and in fact is impressed by the generous arrangements made by the Government of Pakistan for this 75th (Platinum) Meeting of ICAC.