Textile sector seeks sops, reliefs to spur exports

New Delhi, Aug 1 (IANS) The textile sector on Saturday sought from the government more funds for technology upgrade, duty reduction on man-made fibres (MMF) and interest subvention to spur exports.

“We have urged Finance Minister Arun Jaitley to allocate adequate funds for technology upgradation, cut duties on MMF and restore interest subvention for exporters,” a trade body representative said in a statement here.

In a representation to Jaitley, the Federation of Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s (Ficci) textile committee said though export of textiles and clothing products increased steadily over the years, it was below par in the post-quota era.

“There is no reason why we cannot achieve 20 percent export growth over the next decade as China is vacating space in manufacturing,” said panel chairman Shishir Jaipuraia in the statement.

With budget for the technology upgradation fund scheme slashed to Rs.1,520 crore from Rs.1,840 crore for 2015-16, the panel sought to increase it to Rs.5,000 crore, as it has been helpful in attracting investments in the sector.

“We are also concerned over the government move to consider the TUFS term loans in the new scheme under the current review as it would affect projects on hand,” said Jaipuria.

The panel has sought export finance at seven percent interest per annum to boost competitiveness and accelerate exports growth, as interest subvention benefited the sector.

“Excise duty on MMF should be reduced to eight percent from 12.5 percent to bridge the gap between fibre and cotton, as the revenue loss can be made up with increased consumption as in the past (2008-09) when duty was four percent,” Jaipuria said.

The panel also wanted the new textiles policy draft of the Ajay Shankar expert committee to be released.

Jaitley has assured the committee members he will consider their suggestions, the statement added.

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