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New Delhi,

The Government of India recognises the significance of FTA with EU and the  advantages it holds for the country.  Ministry of Textiles is in constant touch with the Ministry of Commerce to pursue FTA with EU to boost the international trade, specially in the textile sector, said SmtRashmi Verma, Secretary, Ministry of Textiles, Government of India, while addressing industry leaders at Texcon’16 a two-day international conference on textiles and apparel organised by Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) in New Delhi, today.
She further added that while Bangladesh enjoys preferential treatment and tax benefits for textile exports, India has greater competitive advantage in terms of environmental compliances. As countries of the European Union lay huge importance to environmental compliances, India stands to gain over Bangladesh, she added.

Indian textile industry is at a turning point. On one hand China’s export growth in textiles is decreasing, India, riding on cost advantage, have huge potential to play a prominent role in international textile trade.  India is also amongst very few countries which have the entire value chain existing with the country.   Further, following the true spirit of federal competitiveness, several states are coming out with their own policy and incentives scheme for the textile sector, which augurs well with the aim to make India a leading global play in the textile sector. Roll out of the GST will also greatly help in streamlining the tax structure and improve compliance, she added.

She appealed industry to take full advantage of the special package announced by the Government for the textile sector.  She also pointed out that industry needs to increasingly focus on innovation, modernisation and technological advancement to become world-leaders in the textile sector.    Stressing on the importance of skilling the workforce to become globally competitive, she said, “At least 10 lakh workers need to be skilled every year to meet the demands of the industry and create direct and indirect employment. In a significant development, the ministry of labour is soon going to notify labour reforms allowing fixed-term employment for the textile sector” she added. She also announced that the Ministry of Textile is working on the new textile policy which will be announced soon.

The Indian textile industry must step up and take advantage of the fact that the world leader in textile – China, is moving away from the sector due to high cost of production. Union Government and state governments as well as the industry must work in tandem to capture share of the world market and occupy the space being vacated by China.

Shri Debi Prasad Mishra, Hon’ble Minister for Industries, School & Mass Education, Government of Odisha, said “We must work out a clear roadmap through policy facilitation, incentives, and structural changes to boost the textile industry in the country. Odisha provides environmental advantage for the sector and stands to gain a great deal from the new initiatives of the Union Government.”

Mr R D Udeshi, Chairman – CII Texcon 2016 & President – Polyester Chain, Reliance Industries Ltd, said, “We must set up skill centres to achieve efficiency in skilling so as to boost efficiency in the textile sector.” The textile industry can greatly benefit from fibre neutrality, he said.

Mr Sachit Jain, Co-Chairman, CII National Committee on Textiles and Joint Managing Director, Vardhman Textiles Ltd, said, “In next five years, India has great chance when textile industry shifts from China. It can greatly enhance employment from urban to rural areas as well.”

“Indian exporters are well supported by Government Schemes such as Duty Drawback, Rebate of State Levies, Merchandise Export from India Scheme, Advanced Authorization, Interest Subvention, Market Development Assistance and Market Access Initiative. These support initiatives allow Indian exporters to overcome a large part of duty disadvantage they face in markets of EU and US where some of the competing nations get a zero duty access,” he added.

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