The country's primary textile factories suffered an estimated $4 billion loss over the past 15 months, primarily due to an acute gas shortage that severely impacted their operations.
The crisis was further exacerbated by soaring cotton prices, placing the sector in a difficult situation, Bangladesh Textile Mills Association (BTMA) revealed on Tuesday.
"In this volatile scenario, predicting growth is a tall order. We are in survival mode."
Industrialists said production costs have escalated due to nearly 10 to 12 hours of daily power outages. The brunt is being felt in urban areas like Dhanmondi and Gulshan, with worsening conditions in rural areas.
"With machinery frequently experiencing power shortage issues, the government needs to turn its attention towards primary textile industries," Khokon urged.
The BTMA leader further highlighted the struggles businesses face due to a dollar crunch in banks and rising raw material costs. "Banks have invested around Tk 1.2 trillion in various textile mills, which now face risks as mills struggle to sell their products," he said.
Khokon called for local apparel factories to source their backward linkage products domestically to improve the situation.