KARACHI: A day-long strike on the call of Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) hit the industrial activity and exports on Thursday as supply chain of products to the port and local markets remained paralysed.shutdown costs rs 7.5bn to trade, industry.Due to the absence of public transport, workers failed to mark their attendance in the units while non-availability of petrol and CNG forced many bike and car owners to stay home. The retail and wholesale markets in the city also remained closed.Site Association of Industry’s President Jawed Bilwani estimated Rs4 billion production and export loss if 50 per cent of the 20,000-25,000 industrial units in entire Karachi remained closed.Of 5,000 units in the Site area alone, about 3,000 were closed. Production halved as a result. As many as 80pc business owners opted to stay back and about 50pc of the managerial cadre managed to reach work.The attendance was comparatively better among the daily-wage earners.As for the whole city, daily wagers were the worst hit as they comprise 50pc of the industrial workforce. Others are either contractual or regular employees.Rashid Ahmed Siddiqui, the president of Korangi Association of Trade and Industry (KATI), said more than 90pc units out of 4,000 units remained closed due to dearth of workers, causing production and export loss of Rs1.5bn in the area.President F.B. Area Association of Trade and Industry (FBATI) Jawed Ali Ghori said the area suffered 30pc productivity loss because of 40pc less attendance of workforce despite calm in the area and operation of all units.President North Karachi Association of Trade and Industry (NKATI), A. Rasheed Fodderwala, claimed 80pc production fell due to 15-20pc workers attendance. Out of 1,700 active units, around 50pc units remained shut, he added.“One-day production and export loss is estimated at Rs250-300 million in the area where 70pc units are export-oriented,” he said.SHOPS: Sindh Tajir Ittehad Chairman Jamil Ahmed Paracha estimated a trade loss of Rs3.5bn a day in the city in terms of closure of more than 200,000 shops.He added that only 10-15pc shops, mostly of edible items, were opened after the strike ended at 4pm. Most shopping centres also failed to operate.
Source: DAWN news