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'Apparel exports to fall short by 24%' - Mr Vaid, AEPC

Jan '09
According to Mr Vaid, wild fluctuation in rupee-dollar exchange rates since April 08 have severely dented the competitiveness of Indian exporters, but the government has done nothing so far to help the clothing industry.

According to the export promotion council, basic infrastructure needs to be toned up and labour laws need to be amended to revive export potential. The exporters are also looking forward to a financially sound stimulus package for the apparel sector which is one of the topmost employer of the economically weaker section -- especially women.

The governments in Pakistan and China have announced sops for the textile and apparel export industry to ease operating pressure on companies and enhance their competitiveness. In India, however, the duty drawback rates have been slashed from 11 to 8.8 per cent for cotton apparel, from 11.2 to 9.8 per cent for blended garments and from 11.5 to 10.5 per cent for synthetic clothes.

The AEPC chairman has called for increasing the rates of duty drawback to 14.64 from 1 September, 2008. He said exporters should be entitled for 80HHC benefit under the Income Tax Act for coming five years. Fringe benefit tax as applicable to the information technology sector should be extended to garment exporters, he added.

About AEPC:
The AEPC is an apex body of more than 7,000 small, medium and large garment exporters. It was set up in 1978 and is sponsored by the ministry of textiles. It provides assistance to Indian exporters as well as international buyers who choose India as their preferred sourcing destination. The council helps in advising the government on policy issues, organizes trade fairs and trains workforce for the apparel industry.

Apparel Export Promotion Council

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