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Indian textiles export target of $45 bn is unachievable, say experts

The textiles industry, which has been struggling due to increasing competition from neighbouring countries like Bangladesh, Indonesia and Vietnam, coupled with rising imports into India and other domestic issues like GST, is now feeling the pinch of a strengthening rupee. The industry is ruling out the possibility of achieving its total export target of $45 billion in the current fiscal.

Sanjay Kumar Jain, Chairman, Confederation of Indian Textile Industry (CITI), says exports were down 40 per cent in October, followed by 13 per cent in November. In December too, the exports came down sharply. If the trend continues, the projected textile export target of $45 billion in the current fiscal will be clearly unachievable.

Given the variation in both the rupee and cotton prices, exporters are unable to take orders or fix any price point to do jobs. Textile exports from India include ready-made and knitwear garments, cotton yarn, fabrics, made-ups, handicraft items, man-made yarns, fabrics and jute products, among other items.

TEA officials say, total ready-made garment exports from India has declined to Rs 78,966 crore in the April-December 2017 period as compared to Rs 83,430 crore in the same period of last fiscal. Of the total exports, exports in dollar terms are estimated at 55 per cent, in Euro at 30 per cent and in Pound Sterling at 12 per cent.

Out of total exports from Tirupur, nearly 10 per cent of big exporters garner 50 per cent of total export value while 90 per cent of small scale exporters account for the remaining 50 per cent, and the impact of rupee appreciation will be more severe on the SMEs.