Duty-free RMG imports from Bangladesh harms West Bengal

July 19, 2012 - India

Garment makers of the eastern Indian state of West Bengal have said the Indian Government’s decision to import readymade garments (RMG) at zero-duty from Bangladesh is adversely impacting the state’s apparel industry.
 
In West Bengal, the price of an apparel increases by nearly 15 percent after addition of all duties and taxes levied by the state government, while a clothing item imported from Bangladesh invites no duty and hence is sold at a lower price, Mr. Vijay Kariwala, Vice President of West Bengal Garment Manufacturers and Dealers’ Association, said on the sidelines of 39th Garment Buyers and Sellers Meet organized by the association.
 
He said if the situation persists, apparel manufacturers in West Bengal may start outsourcing their production to Bangladeshi factories.
 
He informed that the association has urged the state government to establish a garment cluster and an exhibition centre, both under public-private partnership.
 
The association has also requested the government to take steps for improving infrastructure for the garment industry in the state.
 
About 60 different apparel brands and 4000 clothing retailers participated in the Garment Buyers and Sellers Meet, held in Kolkata.