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Indefinite strike of transporters troubles textile traders
Jan '09
The nationwide indefinite strike by transporters since January 4, has created a difficult situation of the traders as no textile goods are arriving at the weekly markets in Erode.

With festivals like Pongal nearing by, traders are expecting a good business but this strike of lorries has put a stop on the sales.

Textiles worth more than Rs200 million are piled up with the merchants as they are unable to dispatch their orders to various destinations, due to the strike.

In this regard, Mr A Sakthivel, President Tirupur Exporters Association (TEA), told Fibre2fashion.com, “The decision of transporters to go on an indefinite nationwide strike from January 04, 2009 mid night for not meeting their demands for lowering of diesel prices by Rs10 per litre, levying of VAT uniformly at 4 percent and abolition of service and toll tax have created a lot of trouble for our exporters who are already facing problems due to cancellation of orders and reduction of prices for the garments exported.”

The major concern is that if the garments are not shipped in right time there will be a cancellation of orders, also future orders and this issue has come at a time when the exporters are already struggling to cope with the ongoing recession in US and EU coupled with reduction of orders from these markets, increased prices of inputs including transaction cost.

“Moreover, if the garments are not exported in right time, our country will be loosing its credibility among buyers and the buyers may resort to our competing countries which are ready to supply at right time. We emphasise a point that supplying product at right time is one of the major competitiveness of an exporting country,” stated the TEA President.

This strike is affecting the textile industry in monetary terms as well. “Definitely, this strike is affecting our buyers. Already Exports and domestic market is badly hit. Presently we are having very choosey buyers and this strike delaying our shipments, there are chances of losing orders by 30 percent. If orders are not received in deadline, it is going to create problem in renewal of contracts,” adds Mr Sunil Kumar Jain, President of Northern India Textile Mills Association (NITMA).

According to Mr S Bala Subramaniyan, Administration Officer of Textile & Garment Exports Association Erode (TGEA), this strike is affecting entire industry from yarn manufacturers to fabric manufacturers to garment and finished products. The textile industry in Erode is suffering loses of around Rs2.5 billion each day.

Mr S Bala Subramaniyan sharing his concerns said, “Presently we are managing using mobile vans and staff buses, for transporting goods but if this strike continues further, then there will be huge loss in industry. Around 5 – 6 lakh jobs will be lost.”

Further he stated, “Transporter's demands are genuine. Government should reduce petrol and diesel prices immediately as crude prices have gone down.”

The most important thing is, if Government fails to intervene and solve this problem in time, the present scenario will affect textile traders severely.

Fibre2fashion News Desk - India

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