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MARKET WATCH 10 JULY, 2019

NATIONAL

INTERNATIONAL

 

ASEAN Trade Ministers persuade India to speed up talks on RCEP

Pressure is piling up on India from other members of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), especially the ASEAN, to end its stalemate with China on market opening offered under the proposed pact. Trade Ministers of Thailand and Indonesia and the Secretary-General of the 10-member ASEAN group met Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal in New Delhi on Tuesday to discuss ways to speed up the negotiations so that the pact is in place by the year-end, a government official told BusinessLine. The RCEP, comprising 16 members, including the ASEAN, China, India, South Korea, Japan, Australia and New Zealand, was expected to be signed last year. Things, however, got delayed for a number of reasons such as India’s reluctance to offer substantial market access to China, disagreement between members over services offers and new governments in some countries like Malaysia.

Finding a way forward

 “The troika from ASEAN countries that met Goyal was focussed on finding ways to move ahead in the negotiations so that the RCEP gets implemented in 2019. The visitors were told that while India would do its best in fast-tracking its discussions with other members, including China, it couldn’t ignore the interests of its industry,” the official said. The Indian manufacturing sector including steel, engineering goods and automobiles, in its discussion with the Commerce Ministry recently, demanded that India should not offer zero duties on more than 42 per cent of traded items to China as most domestic producers will not be able to handle the increased competition. However, New Delhi has already tentatively offered to eliminate duties on 74 per cent items from China (and also New Zealand and Australia) as part of the RCEP deal. What has brought things to a stand-still between India and China is Beijing’s demand that New Delhi should eliminate duties on more than 90 per cent items from the country, as it is willing to do in case of the ASEAN, Japan and South Korea, and is not ready to accept a lower offer. “There will possibly be discussions between Indian and Chinese officials in a bid to break the deadlock over market access prior to the next round of RCEP talks in China later in July and the meeting of Trade Ministers in the country early August,” the official said. China has already hinted that other members should go ahead with a mega trade pact if India continued to dilly-dally by proposing a free trade pact between ASEAN + 3 which includes China, South Korea and Japan. New Delhi is hesitant about opting out of the RCEP pact because, if concluded, it would be the largest free trade bloc in the world accounting for 25 per cent of global GDP and 30 per cent of world trade, giving members huge opportunities to expand trade and investment within the region.

Source: The Hindu Business Line

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Industry not convinced that RCEP will create win-win situation for all: Piyush Goyal

Issues were flagged in a meeting in the India-ASEAN Troika Trade Ministers' meeting here. The domestic industry is not convinced that the proposed mega free-trade agreement RCEP will create a win-win situation for all, the commerce ministry said Tuesday. Issues were flagged in a meeting in the India-ASEAN Troika Trade Ministers' meeting here. It was an informal consultation on the ongoing Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP). "Market access issues with China for Indian goods have been particularly problematic. Indian Industry is not convinced that RCEP will create a win-win situation for all by ensuring balanced outcomes in across the key pillars, particularly goods and services," the ministry said in a statement. In the meeting, Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal said there is apprehension and pessimism in the Indian industry about the impact of previous free-trade agreements. India made asymmetrical sacrifice in goods, giving much more than it received, he said. He added that the promise of commensurate offers in services subsequently by ASEAN countries did not fructify. "The surge in goods imports into India is accentuated by instances of non-adherence to the rules of origin provisions and lack of full cooperation in investigating and addressing such breaches," the ministry said. It added that the utilisation of preferential tariffs by India under the India-ASEAN FTA is below 30 per cent because of standards, regulatory measures and other non-tariff barriers in the region. Market access issues with China for Indian goods have been particularly problematic, it said. The minister emphasised on adherence to the RCEP-guiding principles to balance high ambition on goods tariff reduction with addressing of sensitivities in bilateral parings like India-China through temporary and permanent deviations/ exclusions becomes important. Quoting minister, it said India looks at RCEP as a logical extension of its Act East Policy and it holds enormous potential for economic growth and stability for the entire region. He said that in the 26th round of RCEP negotiations at the experts level, which has concluded recently in Melbourne, some progress has been achieved with member countries showing a degree of flexibility and accommodation. "India too has shown significant flexibility during the negotiations and helped to achieve convergence in few important areas," it said adding two more chapters are close to conclusion, which will take the number to nine of the total 16 chapters. He has expressed hope that the negotiations will achieve even greater convergence during the coming rounds in China and Vietnam. The minister also stressed on possible mechanism to address persistent and wide imbalances in trade to give comfort to stakeholders. Services negotiations must also target commensurate levels of ambition, with offers covering most sub-sectors of interest in all modes in a binding manner, the statement said. RCEP bloc comprises 10 Asean group members (Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore, Thailand, the Philippines, Laos and Vietnam) and their six FTA partners -- India, China, Japan, South Korea, Australia and New Zealand. Besides Goyal, the meeting was attended by Acting Minister of Commerce of Thailand Chutima Bunyapraphasara, Minister of Trade of Indonesia Enggartiasto Lukita, ASEAN Secretary General Lim Jock Hoi and TNC Chair of RCEP Iman Pambagyo.

Source: Economic Times

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India imposing tariffs on US products, no longer acceptable, says Trump

"India has long had a field day putting Tariffs on American products. No longer acceptable!" Trump tweeted. President Donald Trump on Tuesday said India has long had a "field day" imposing tariffs on American products, which is "no longer acceptable" to the US. Trump's terse comment came days after his meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the sidelines of the G20 Summit in Osaka on June 28 where the two leaders aired their concerns over the bilateral trade disputes and agreed for a meeting of their commerce ministers to sort out the issues. "India has long had a field day putting Tariffs on American products. No longer acceptable!" Trump tweeted on Tuesday. Later this week, US Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross and Energy Secretary Rick Perry are scheduled to address a major India centric conference in Washington DC. President Trump, championing his 'America First' policy has been a vocal critic of India for levying "tremendously high" duties on US products, has described the country as a "tariff king".Though trade is an important part of the booming bilateral relationship, a row over market access and tariffs has escalated in recent months, leading to fears of a protracted dispute. Before his meeting with Modi, Trump tweeted, "I look forward to speaking with Prime Minister Modi about the fact that India, for years having put very high Tariffs against the United States, just recently increased the Tariffs even further. This is unacceptable and the Tariffs must be withdrawn!" India has raised tariffs on 28 items, including almond, pulses and walnut, exported from the US in retaliation to America's withdrawal of preferential access for Indian products. Trump has also criticised India's high import tariff on the iconic Harley Davidson motorcycles as "unacceptable".President Trump terminated India's designation as a beneficiary developing nation under the key GSP trade programme from June 5 after determining that New Delhi has not assured the US that it will provide "equitable and reasonable access" to its markets. The Generalized System of Preference (GSP) is the largest and oldest US trade preference programme and is designed to promote economic development by allowing duty-free entry for thousands of products from designated beneficiary countries. The Trump administration wants India to lower the trade barriers and embrace "fair and reciprocal" trade. Last February, India slashed the customs duty on imported motorcycles like Harley-Davidson to 50 per cent after Trump called it "unfair" and threatened to increase the tariff on import of Indian bikes to the US. The government on June 21 last year decided to impose these duties in retaliation to the US decision of significantly hiking customs duties on certain steel and aluminium products. America, in March last year, imposed 25 per cent tariff on steel and a 10 per cent import duty on aluminium products. Many US companies like Google, Mastercard, Visa and Amazon have raised concerns over the issue of data localisation and its impact on their operational cost. In April last year, the Reserve Bank of India had issued a directive on 'Storage of Payment System Data'. It had advised all system providers to ensure that within a period of six months, the entire data relating to payment systems operated by them is stored in a system only in India, for effective monitoring. India has also dragged the US to the World Trade Organisation's dispute settlement mechanism over the imposition of import duties on steel and aluminium. India's exports to the US in 2017-18 stood at $47.9 billion, while imports were at $26.7 billion. The trade balance is in favour of India.

Source: Business Standard

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Domestic industry is unsure of benefits of deal, govt tells RCEP nations

India on Tuesday told ASEAN nations that the domestic industry is not convinced that the proposed RCEP deal will create a 'win-win situation for all' by ensuring balanced outcomes. India has told the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) bloc of member countries that the domestic industry is unsure of the benefits of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) deal, currently being negotiated.In its most direct statement on the matter ever since talks began, India on Tuesday told Asean nations that the domestic industry is not convinced that the proposed RCEP deal will create a ‘win-win situation for all’ by ensuring balanced outcomes for both goods and services.This was communicated by Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal at a meeting with his counterparts from Thailand Chutima Bunyapraphasara, Indonesian trade minister Enggartiasto Lukita, and Asean Secretary General Lim Jock Hoi.Arguing that ‘apprehension and pessimism’ about the impact of the earlier free trade agreements (FTAs) persist in the industry, Goyal said India has made asymmetrical sacrifice in goods, offering much more than it has received on the RCEP deal, yet. The promise of commensurate offers in services subsequently by Asean countries did not fructify, he added.The RCEP is a proposed pact between 10 Asean economies and six others (New Zealand, Australia, China, India, Japan, and South Korea) with which the grouping currently has FTAs. So far, 26 rounds of talks have concluded, apart from six minister-level meets.“The surge in goods imports into India is accentuated by instances of non-adherence to the rules of origin provisions and lack of full cooperation in investigating and addressing such breaches. The utilisation of preferential tariffs by India under the India-Asean FTA is below 30 per cent because of standards, regulatory measures, and other non-tariff barriers in the region,” the commerce department said on Tuesday.Goyal also stressed that it has been difficult to get China to allow market access for Indian goods. A report on the RCEP, commissioned by the Confederation of Indian Industry and submitted to the government, has recommended that products — the trade of which is dominated by China — should not be included for tariff reductions under RCEP. Products on which anti-dumping duties are levied have also been recommended for exclusion.India has resisted calls by most nations, arguing New Delhi should slash existing tariffs on up to 90 per cent of all goods, as well as demands by developed economies such as Japan and Australia to open up the Indian market to specific products such as dairy and engineering goods. Against that backdrop, the future of the mega trade bloc, under planning since 2012, is uncertain; more so, as several ministries have been opposed to the talks.While the Ministry of External Affairs is reportedly on board, others, including steel, agriculture, and chemicals are in favour of India leaving the deal.The commerce and industry minister emphasised the adherence to the RCEP guiding principles to balance high ambition on goods’ tariff reduction with addressing the sensitives in bilateral pairings like India–China through temporary and permanent deviations/exclusions becomes important.India has told other negotiating nations that services negotiations must also target commensurate levels of ambition, with offers covering most sub-sectors of interest in all modes in a binding manner.The next round of talks is slated to begin in China on July 22.

Sticking point

  • The RCEP is a proposed pact between 10 Asean economies and six others (New Zealand, Australia, China, India, Japan, and South Korea) with which the grouping currently has FTAs
  • So far, 26 rounds of talks have concluded, apart from six minister-level meetings
  • Arguing that ‘apprehension and pessimism’ about the impact of the earlier FTAs persist in the industry, Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal said India has made asymmetrical sacrifice in goods, offering much more than it has received on the RCEP deal, yet
  • India has told other negotiating nations that services negotiations must also target commensurate levels of ambition

Source: Business Standard

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Modi govt needs more than tax breaks to make India an investment hub

India is missing out on global value chains because of its inadequate transport infrastructure, land and labor regulations and tax structure. India wants to attract “mega investments” in manufacturing with tax incentives, but it will need more than that to compete with Southeast Asian peers who are gaining from a shift in global supply chains. Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman outlined plans in her budget last week to offer income and indirect tax breaks to global technology companies to set up factories in India to make everything from semiconductors to solar panels. The government also wants to organize a global summit to attract investors. As Asia’s third-largest economy, India lags behind Southeast Asian peers when it comes to winning over investors. Foreign direct investment into India was 1.5 per cent of gross domestic product in 2017, according to the World Bank, compared with 3 per cent in Malaysia and 6.3 per cent in Vietnam. Part of the reason is that it’s harder to open and run a business in India than in Southeast Asia, according to the World Bank’s ease of doing business index. For example in Vietnam, which has an economy a 10th the size of India’s, it’s easier to start a business, register a property and enforce a contract, according to the index. India is missing out on global value chains because of its inadequate transport infrastructure, land and labor regulations and tax structure, said Pravin Krishna, a professor of International Economics and Business at Johns Hopkins University in Washington. “Tax incentives may indeed help a bit,” he said before the budget. “The problem of improving investment climate is a much larger one.” Vietnam has emerged as one of the biggest beneficiaries of the US-China trade war as businesses look to shift operations to bypass higher tariffs. India wants to now offer incentives similar to Vietnam to gain from supply chain disruptions, with the government identifying industries including lithium battery technology, electric vehicles and consumer electronics for tax breaks. Attracting foreign investment is key to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s flagship Make-in-India program, which is aimed at creating jobs and reducing unemployment. India has set a target of increasing the share of manufacturing in the economy to 25 per cent by 2020 from about 15 per cent at present. It also plans to invest $1.4 trillion in infrastructure by 2024. So far, Modi has struggled to ease archaic land and labor laws that make it difficult for companies to start and expand. The government is now proposing to combine multiple labor laws into four broad codes with the aim to reduce disputes, Sitharaman said.

Source: Business Standard

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USD 5 trillion economy ‘eminently’ doable, says NITI Aayog’s Rajiv Kumar

Vice-chairman of Niti Aayog Rajiv Kumar on Tuesday said the target of achieving an economy of USD five trillion within 2024-25 was ‘eminently’ doable and the private sector would have to take the lead. Speaking at the AGM of Indian Chamber of Commerce here, Kumar said the government alone would not be able to meet the target of achieving the USD five trillion economy. “It cannot be done by the government alone. The private investors would have to take the lead,” Kumar said. The Niti Aayog Vice Chairperson said that budget mentions several initiatives to show that the government was willing to work with the private sector. These included a hike in the disinvestment target, governmental support to NBFCs and a long-term plan to deepen the corporate bond markets. “India was not an autocratic country,” Kumar said and added that whatever needed to be done had to be within the democratic framework. He said that structural reforms in the agriculture sector would also have to carried out. “This is key to the achievement of USD five trillion economy. There is a need to modernise the farm sector,” he said.

Source: The Hindu Business Line

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India, China bilateral trade declines by 3.59% in first 5 months of this year

The bilateral trade between India and China has declined by 3.59% year on year, totalling $36.87 billion in the first five months of this year, denting optimism that the total trade volume may cross $100 billion mark in 2019. The India-China bilateral trade last year touched a historic high of $95.54 billion, raising hopes that the trade this year could cross the historic $100 billion mark. The trade deficit in 2018, according to Chinese official data, climbed to $57.86 billion from $51.72 billion in 2017. As per the latest data released by Chinese customs, the bilateral trade in the first five months of 2019 has declined by 3.59% year on year amounting to $36.87 billion. In the same period, India's exports to China declined by 1.62% to reach $7.70 billion while Chinese exports to India decelerated by 4.10% to total $29.17 billion. In May this year, the bilateral trade declined by a significant 5.04%, totalling $8.18 billion year on year. India’s exports to China in May 2019 stood at $1.52 billion, decreasing by 7.15%, while Chinese exports have declined by 4.54%, standing at $6.66 billion.After the bilateral trade crossed $95 billion last year which was a historic high, officials in recent months expressed optimism that the bilateral trade for the first time may cross $100 billion. But the trend of decline may make it difficult unless the trade volumes picks up later in the year. Major growth commodities of India's export basket in the period January-May 2019 were organic chemicals at 23.56%, cotton 50.73%, plastics 25.48%, fish and crustaceans 394.97%, electrical machinery 33.54%, Iron and steel 39.12% and coffee, tea, mate and spices 654.22%, according to the official data. Export of commodities such as natural earls, precious stones, copper, mineral fuel declined by 29.65%, 89.21, 39.38% respectively from January-May period. Indian exports of fish and crustaceans, molluscs and other aquatic invertebrates to China continued to show a sharp increase, registering a robust growth of 394.97% from January-May 2019 to reach $392.38 million. Export of Indian grapes to China grew by 165.28% year-on-year to reach $13.26 million. Export of Indian sugar to China stood at $7.77 million. India was the largest exporter of coffee, tea, mate and spices to China (46.97% share) with value of $168.42 million. This was mainly due to the growth in exports to China of spices, having more than 90% share totalling $156.86 million. India was the third largest exporter of fisheries 6.98% share, fifth largest exporter of fresh grapes 2.68% share, and cane and beet sugar to China 2.12% share. Major commodities of Chinese exports to India were electronic items 26.12%, electrical equipment, organic chemicals, plastics and fertilizers. Import of electrical machinery and equipment have been witnessing decline of more than 20% year-on-year for the last 4 months. Imports of fertilisers from China showed a sharp increase of 233.17% to reach $512.39 million in January-May, 2019. India remained the largest export destination for Chinese fertilizers. Among India's top exporting items to China, exports of fish and crustaceans, molluscs and other aquatic invertebrates sustained a rising momentum. With an increase of 394.97 %, India overtook Australia and ascended to the fourth largest exporter of fish and crustaceans, molluscs and other aquatic invertebrates to China $392.38 million with a share of 6.57%. Exports of coffee, tea, mate and spices enjoyed robust growth and witnessed a steep increase of 654.22% to reach $168.42 million with a share of 46.97%, securing India as the first largest exporter of coffee, tea, mate and spices to China, according to the data.India’s cotton (including yarn and woven fabric) exports to China showed an increase of 50.73% to reach $837.90 million. With a market share of 18.19% India was the second largest exporter of cotton to China. Despite a decrease of 29.34%, India was still the second largest exporter of diamonds to China amounting to $808.55 million with a share of 24.63%, just after South Africa. India was the second largest exporter of salt; sulphur, earths and stone, plastering materials, lime and cement to China amounting to $419.75 million with 12.54% market share. Agricultural items, exports of other solid residues of soybean oil extraction, retained an increase of 182.36% to reach $0.15 million, although China’s imports from global partners slumped. India was the second largest exporter of other solid residues of soybean oil extraction to China. India still ranked the fifth largest exporter of fresh grapes and cane or beet sugar to China. Exports of fresh grapes increased by 165.28% to reach $13.26 million and exports of cane or beet sugar increased by 227.67% to reach $7.77 million. Exports of rice to China sustained a steep increase of 9,999% to reach $0.115 million, registering a breakthrough compared to the same period of last year, according to the data.

Source: Live Mint

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Second India-Russia Strategic Economic Dialogue to be held on 10 July

The Second India-Russia Strategic Economic Dialogue (IRSED) shall be held on 10 July in New Delhi, under the chairmanship of Dr. Rajiv Kumar, Vice-Chairman, National Institution for Transforming India (NITI) Aayog and Mr. Timur Maksimov, Deputy Minister of the Economic Development of the Russian Federation. The Second meeting of the IRSED shall be focussing on six core areas of cooperation, namely, Development of Transport Infrastructure and Technologies; Development of Agriculture and Agro-Processing sector; Small and Medium Business support; Digital Transformation and Frontier Technologies; Cooperation in Trade, Banking, Finance, and Industry; and Tourism & Connectivity. The IRSED was established following a bilateral Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed between NITI Aayog and the Ministry of Economic Development of the Russian Federation during the 19th edition of the Annual India-Russia Bilateral Summit, which was held on October 5, 2018, in New Delhi. The First India-Russia Strategic Economic Dialogue was held in St. Petersburg between November 25-26, 2018, and was chaired by Mr. Maxim Oreshkin, Minister of Economic Development of the Russian Federation, and Dr. Rajiv Kumar, Vice-Chairman, NITI Aayog.

Source: Press Information Bureau

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Chinese tech to help textile units cut water use by 70%

Amid water scarcity becoming a burning problem across the country, some textile units in the city are all set to embrace new technology that will drastically cut down their water requirement. South Gujarat Textile Processors’ Association (SGTPA) has tied up with Chinese manufacturers to introduce first-of-its-kind digital printing machine that will reduce water consumption by almost 70%. SGTPA officials say the digital printing machine has unique features to print fabrics without using water. Unlike the conventional printing setup in the mills, the Chinese machine uses very minimal space. At present, the textile mills have average requirement of 12 litres of water for processing one metre of printed fabric. The waste water generated from the printing process, which contains hazardous chemicals, is then transferred to Common Effluent Treatment Plant (CETP). The daily requirement of textile mills in Pandesara and Sachin GIDC is more than 140 million litres per day (MLD) for printing and drum washing of fabrics. The mills in Pandesara receive 40 MLD tertiary treated water and the rest is potable water which is supplied through the civic body’s pipeline network. SGTPA president Jitu Vakharia told TOI, “The Chinese digital printing technology will revolutionize textile printing sector in Surat. The requirement of water will be reduced by almost 70%. We had organized a demonstration of the Chinese printing machine at Sachin GIDC on Sunday where many textile mill owners were convinced on switching over to new technology to save water and check pollution in the industry.” Vakharia said grey fabrics manufactured by powerloom weavers are supplied to textile mills for processing. The first stage of process is setting of fabric and bleaching in drum washers, which consumes a lot of water. The white fabric-processed in the drum washing-is transferred to printing department for colour mixing, plates and screening. Zili Zhao, director of the Chinese firm which manufactures digital printing machine, told TOI, “It took more than six months for us to specially design this machine, exclusively for the mills in Surat. This machine will eliminate the printing setup in the existing textile mills and that the mill owners can easily print the fabric and dispatch it for end users.”

Source: Times of India

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MSME Ministry has plans to come up with e-commerce portal for MSMEs

Central Government is aiming to create an e-commerce website to sell products from the MSME and Khadi sector. Last week the Union Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Nitin Gadkari had said that this is being done in order to increase the contribution of these sectors to the Indian Economy as micro, small and medium enterprises contribute to 29% of the country’s GDP. MSME ministry’s new e-commerce portal will be in line with China’s Alibaba and America’s Amazon.com. This new platform will not only connect the traders directly with the customers but will also increase their market value, its contribution to GDP as well as employment. The Union Minister had said that “Amazon in the US and Alibaba in China did a world of good to their MSME sector. On those lines, for MSME and Khadi Gramudyog, we are going to launch a big marketing site”. India’s MSME sector is a huge stakeholder in the country’s economy and has generated jobs for millions of people but they only lack in the capability of marketing their products so that it could reach to new customers. Government plans to curb this issue with the help of the website which will increase the sales and meet the target of making the MSME sector reach 50% of Indian GDP in the next five years. Moreover, this step is expected to increase the employment rate by bringing a lot of job opportunities as well as attracting more people to start their businesses to sell on the site. The estimate of employment through this step is 15 crore jobs. “Targets should be big. Our target is that in the next five years, we will contribute 50% to India’s gross domestic product (GDP), and we will give employment to 5 crore people,” Gadkari said. Gadkari also said that he has fulfilled all his promises and he will happily welcome all the criticism if he fails in this plan but till now he has achieved all that he said just like making roads

Source: KNN India

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Weaving a style statement with Telangana’s forgotten handloom

Some prominent but forgotten Telangana weaves will make a fashionable comeback during the National Handloom Day celebration next month.  All set to be revived is Telia Rumal, a double ikat castor oil dipped yarn and handwoven cloth, mainly used in dargahs across India and in the Middle East as headgear/scarf. The process for Telia Rumal is different from the normal tie and dye. It is specially preferred in deserts and hot climes for its soothing effect. With people, especially women, preferring to shield their face and head from the scorching heat, Telia Rumal fabrics are being created again with emphasis on attractive colours and dyes. These handwoven fabrics are being created in Puttapaka of Nalgonda district after almost 40 years by weavers Guda Srinivas and Shankar. “We are hoping a whole new market will open up for this eco-friendly fabric,” Sailaja Ramaiyer, Managing Director, Handloom and Textiles, told The Hindu. Mahadevpur Tussars from Telangana known for their glorious temples borders and fabric textures are also set for a comeback. “This year, the focus is to create saris in natural dyes on these silks. The process is not easy and natural dyeing expert Duddyala Shankar from Koyalgudam worked with weavers of Mahadevpur, mainly with Gorrebapu and Shankaraiah, to create naturally dyed yarns which were then woven, some of those with zari,” she explained. Next year, focus will be on Pitambari and Armoor silk weaves. The intention is to create a long-standing collection in natural dyes that are comfortable to wear and good for the environment too, Ms. Sailaja pointed out. All these weaves and much more will be used and showcased by upcoming designers at a fashion show to be held at State Art Gallery in Madhapur here on August 7 to mark the National Handloom Day. It will be followed by a 10-day exhibition at People’s Plaza. The department started showcasing Telangana’s handloom since 2017 through fashion shows where well known designers, models and celebrities like actor Samantha transformed humble eco-friendly handloom into fashionable ensemble for all age groups, apart from saris. This year Rena Singh, a Delhi based designer, will present modern western wear in handloom alongside linens, silk and denim ikats.

Attracting retailers

The department is also in the process of engaging with big brands and retail players like Myntra, Reliance Trends, Westside and Arvind who can place orders for handloom fabrics with the weavers. The effort is to help the weavers, both in cooperative and private sectors, earn sufficient income through skill, design upgrade and marketing. “Our endeavour is to project handloom as fashionable, high-end niche product in the next few years,” she said.

Source: The Hindu

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Raymond focuses on mini TRS to boost sales

Raymond is opening more Mini TRS (The Raymond Shop) across the country. It has opened 300 Mini TRS stores especially in Tier III and Tier IV towns. The Mini TRS is aimed at providing the immersive Raymond retail experience across all emerging markets and towns to the discerning customer. Every franchisee is supported by an area manager who builds local calendarized activation and marketing plans for each outlet depending on the local festivals as well as key talking points. Through a cooperative marketing pool, the activation calendar is implemented through the local franchisee and store so that they may leverage their local knowledge to maximize the efficiency of all such activities. Each city/ market develops and drives activations and promotions that are best suited for its market and customers. Raymond is expecting around one-fifth of its textile and apparel retail business to come from small towns, where it is opening Mini TRS stores. The company has identified around 800 small towns with a population above 50,000 for such mini stores. While a regular TRS covers 2500 sq ft, a Mini TRS is spread over 800 sq feet. Textile and apparel major Raymond will invest Rs 350 crores in capacity and retail expansion this year. This will help ramp up its apparel sales and grow the fabric business over the next few years.

Source: Fashion United

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Textile Fairs India to be held at Delhi's Pragati maidan from July 15 to 17

It will showcase fashion trends and attempt to bridge the gap in the textile supply chain by providing an environment to manufacturers and buyers to network. From sustainable fashion to innovation in the textile industry, the Textile Fairs India (TFI) will be held at Pragati Maidan (July 15-17). It will showcase fashion trends and attempt to bridge the gap in the textile supply chain by providing an environment to manufacturers and buyers to network. At the 2019 edition of TFI, over 250 manufacturers and suppliers across India and overseas (Austria, China, Hong Kong, Japan) will showcase their latest developments in fibres, yarns, fabrics, and embellishments and garments. One of the shows, TFI Trend Forum, will provide a view of emerging and upcoming trends in fashion – colours, prints, fabrics, accessories and lifestyle. This will also give an overview of fashion information for Spring Summer and Autumn Winter 2020 collection trends. The forum will also host a talk on sustainability in fashion by industry experts. Collections of sustainable products (recycled/upcycled/circular fashion) will be presented. A highlight is the TFI Fashion Design Awards that will have a fashion design competition organised by TFI in association with fashion guru Prasad Bidappa, as a platform for upcoming talented designers.

Source: The New Indian Express

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Global Textile Raw Material Price 09-07-2019

Item

Price

Unit

Fluctuation

Date

PSF

1238.00

USD/Ton

-0.87%

7/9/2019

VSF

1731.02

USD/Ton

0%

7/9/2019

ASF

2260.35

USD/Ton

0%

7/9/2019

Polyester    POY

1234.37

USD/Ton

-1.73%

7/9/2019

Nylon    FDY

2425.17

USD/Ton

0.60%

7/9/2019

40D    Spandex

4298.51

USD/Ton

0%

7/9/2019

Nylon    POY

1379.59

USD/Ton

-1.04%

7/9/2019

Acrylic    Top 3D

2650.27

USD/Ton

0%

7/9/2019

Polyester    FDY

5489.32

USD/Ton

0%

7/9/2019

Nylon    DTY

1437.68

USD/Ton

-1.49%

7/9/2019

Viscose    Long Filament

2294.48

USD/Ton

0%

7/9/2019

Polyester    DTY

2410.65

USD/Ton

0%

7/9/2019

30S    Spun Rayon Yarn

2417.91

USD/Ton

0%

7/9/2019

32S    Polyester Yarn

1960.47

USD/Ton

0%

7/9/2019

45S    T/C Yarn

2628.48

USD/Ton

0%

7/9/2019

40S    Rayon Yarn

2105.69

USD/Ton

0%

7/9/2019

T/R    Yarn 65/35 32S

2396.13

USD/Ton

0%

7/9/2019

45S    Polyester Yarn

2686.57

USD/Ton

0%

7/9/2019

T/C    Yarn 65/35 32S

2258.17

USD/Ton

0%

7/9/2019

10S    Denim Fabric

1.33

USD/Meter

0%

7/9/2019

32S    Twill Fabric

0.76

USD/Meter

0%

7/9/2019

40S    Combed Poplin

1.03

USD/Meter

0%

7/9/2019

30S    Rayon Fabric

0.62

USD/Meter

0%

7/9/2019

45S    T/C Fabric

0.68

USD/Meter

0%

7/9/2019

Source: Global Textiles

Note: The above prices are Chinese Price (1 CNY = 0.14522 USD dtd. 9/07/2019). The prices given above are as quoted from Global Textiles.com.  SRTEPC is not responsible for the correctness of the same.

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How Donald Trump's trade war is turning out to be boon for Bangladesh

For the first time in 30 years, Newage Group, a Bangladesh-based garment manufacturer, is sensing an opportunity to sell in the US and it has President Donald Trump’s battle with China to thank. Newage, a supplier to Hennes & Mauritz AB, has been doing business with European companies for three decades but is now getting inquiries from Macy’s Inc. and Gap Inc., Asif Ibrahim, vice-chairman of Newage Group, said in an interview. Rival Viyellatex Group forecasts its annual exports to the US will more than double to $25 million in the year that began July 1, buoyed by rising orders, according to Chairman David Hasanat. The South Asian nation, which is the world’s second-largest garment exporter, has seen the value of its overseas sales rise to a record $40.5 billion in the year ended June 30, coinciding with Trump boosting tariffs on $200 billion of Chinese goods to 25% from 10%. The tit-for-tat trade war has seen American and Chinese orders for more than half of the 1,981 tariffed products so far being re-routed to other countries, including Vietnam and Malaysia. “The rate of inquiries has gone up by 30%," Newage’s Ibrahim said. “Tariffs are being imposed unilaterally by one person at this point in time. That made some retailers a bit nervous. They are shifting their orders to this country to lower their business risks.’’ Macy’s said in May the company has been working for a “number of months, and really for a couple of years, about moving production out of China," while the same month Gap said it has been migrating sourcing out of China for the last several years. For Bangladesh, which aims to double total exports to $72 billion by 2024, snaring part of the $41 billion of the clothing business that goes to China will provide a fillip to an economy that the Asian Development Bank forecasts will expand a record 8% for the next two years. Bangladesh’s garment industry, which employs 4 million people, accounts for 13% of gross domestic product. Finished clothing has so far been excluded from the list, but should talks fail and Trump raises tariffs on $300 billion of Chinese products in the next round, textiles will be hit. Bangladesh and Vietnam are well-positioned as apparel manufacturing hubs and will be obvious choices as retailers with exposure to the US move their production out of China, Fitch Solutions said in a report. To tap rising demand, Newage, which has an annual revenue of about $100 million, tied up with a Chinese investor to set up a $20 million garment factory in Kaliakoir on the outskirts of the capital Dhaka. The unit expects to start production in four months. “There’s a huge potential to further expand investment" in the garment industry, Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina said in a speech to Chinese businessmen in Beijing on July 4. “We highly value the huge interest demonstrated by the Chinese investors in our country and as such we are setting up a special economic zone for the Chinese Investors." But for Bangladesh companies there’s a roadblock to winning more orders from Western firms. With its infrastructure ranked at 103 in the World Economic Forum’s Global Competitiveness Index, compared with 29 for China, Bangladesh needs to improve its supply chain, modernize its garment factories, build highways and reduce red tape at ports to lure more buyers. Prime Minister Hasina opened two four-lane bridges on the highway to the Chittagong Port in May and another bridge earlier in March, cutting travel time to the nation’s main port by almost half. The government has also been accelerating construction of highways. Still it takes 168 hours for exporters in the nation to ship from Dhaka, while it takes just 23 hours in Shanghai, according to the latest Doing Business report by the World Bank. “Of course, we are not as good as Hong Kong or China," said Khalid Quadir, co-founder and chief executive officer of Brummer & Partners Asset Management (Bangladesh). “There’s congestion at the port, but congestion may be the function of more and more containers going there. Our ports aren’t ready." Exporters also need to improve productivity, said Fahmida Khatun, executive director of Dhaka-based Centre for Policy Dialogue. “In order to increase productivity, we need to go for technological upgrade and automation in the garment industry. There are some companies that have adopted automation, but it has to be done across the sector," she said. Then there’s the price advantage. China exports garments at about $2.3 a piece, compared with $2.79 for Bangladesh and $2.52 in Cambodia, according to Rubana Huq, president of Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association. China’s price dominance over other nations along with technological superiority may keep exports from the north Asian nation resilient, she said. But for now, Bangladesh companies are making the best of the situation. About 30% of Viyellatex’s clients, including PVH Corp. -- the owner of American fashion labels Tommy Hilfiger and Calvin Klein, are from the US, compared with 20% a year ago. “We are ready to handle an influx of business orders from American companies," said Viyellatex’s Chairman Hasanat.

Source: Live Mint

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German transport, textiles sectors use short-hours facility most: Ifo

German producers of transport equipment and textiles are making the most use of a short-hours facility aimed at avoiding mass lay-offs as the manufacturing sector lingers in a recession, a survey by economic institute Ifo showed on Tuesday. It said that 30% of makers of transport equipment other than cars, which include shipyards, train builders and motorcycles, were using the facility, known as "Kurzarbeit". In the textiles sector, about 25% of companies were doing so. The Kurzarbeit scheme was used by many struggling companies in the 2008-2009 recession, allowing them to preserve jobs by cutting employees' hours when plant usage was low and having the government compensate workers for part of their lost wages. An Ifo survey of some 2,000 companies earlier this month found that 8.5% of manufacturers expect to use short-hours working in the coming three months, the highest level since early 2013. Some 3.8% are already using the facility. It is being applied by 18% of leather and shoe makers, 9% of metal producers, 7% of machine makers and an equal share of carmakers and car parts suppliers.  In its tenth year of growth, Europe's largest economy has been cooling as punitive tariffs imposed by China and the United States on their respective imports hurt German manufacturers exporting to the world's two largest economies. Unemployment in Germany fell slightly in June compared to the previous month, data from the Federal Labour Office showed on Monday, but there was an increase in the amount of underemployment, clearly pointing to a weakening in the economy. Seasonally adjusted unemployment fell by 1,000 to 2.281 million compared to the month before. A drop of 3,000 had been forecast. The unemployment rate remained at 5%. The government expects the economy to grow by a modest 0.5% this year. German exports rebounded more strongly than expected in May, but failed to fully recover from a slump a month earlier. Analysts said the rise did not signal the end of the problems for manufacturers and the economy almost certainly slowed down or even possibly contracted in the second quarter.

Source: Reuters

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Asian nations may gain as US threatens additional tariffs

Several Asian nations may gain in the US clothing market if the threat to impose additional tariffs on Chinese clothing imports is carried out, says a report by global business information firm Textiles Intelligence. If additional tariffs are imposed, the landed prices of imports from Chinese suppliers will rise, negatively affecting imports from there. Suppliers in China have been under pressure in recent years to reduce their prices in order to maintain order volumes. Also set to benefit are the industries in Bangladesh, Cambodia, Indonesia and Sri Lanka, despite the fact that US imports from each of these four countries have either stalled or declined in recent years, says a report in issue 42 of ‘Global Apparel Markets’ by the company. ‘Global Apparel Markets’ is published four times a year by Textiles Intelligence. Each issue provides an independent and worldwide perspective on the global textile industry. The United States has started the legal process necessary to impose additional tariffs on virtually all remaining imports from China, including clothing, after it imposed additional tariffs on $200 billion worth of imports from China in May 2019. As a result, the switch in sourcing away from China which has been apparent in recent years will accelerate, and other major supplying countries in Asia, especially India and Vietnam, are likely to make gains. In South and Central America, however, suppliers in El Salvador, Honduras and Mexico are likely to continue to struggle to maintain orders. To offset any decline in US clothing imports from China, and maintain production levels, Chinese producers may set up outward processing arrangements (OPAs) with their counterparts in other Asian countries so that the operations which determine a garment’s origin, such as sewing, are performed in other countries while operations which do not affect a garment’s origin, such as minor sewing, finishing and packaging, are carried out in China, says the report. Garments manufactured in this way would be deemed to have originated in other Asian countries, rather than China, and as a result they would not be subject to additional tariffs, a press release from the company added.

Source: Fibre2Fashion

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Chinese vocational institute opens branch in Uganda in efforts to boost economic dev't

Shandong Vocational College of Science and Technology has opened a branch in Uganda in a bid to boost the country's vocational education. Huang Qi, the deputy head of Shandong Provincial Department of Education, said the opening of the college marks a new stage in the cooperation between Shandong Province and Uganda. "Shandong and Uganda have been engaged in exchanges and cooperation in the fields of industry and trade, processing of agricultural products and animal husbandry. There are also many people from Uganda living or working in all parts of Shandong," Huang said at the launch of the college here. Aggrey David Kibenge, under-secretary at the ministry of education and sports, who represented the minister said the college would boost the country's vocational education, which is critical in boosting social and economic development. Lt. Gen. Charles Angina, deputy chairperson of Operation Wealth Creation, a state wealth creation agency, said the Ugandan government is promoting vocational education and training as a strategic medium for industrialization. "It gives us great delight to witness the long-awaited establishment of Shandong College here in Uganda which will greatly promote the cultivation of technical personnel with various skills and knowledge needed in the next chapter of Uganda's story which is an economic take-off and massive industrialization," Angina said. Liu Guiyu, the president of Shandong Vocational College of Science and Technology, said they would focus on teaching computer application technology, textile and garment, and machining. The college dubbed, Shandong Vocational College of Science & Technology, East Africa (Uganda) College, is co-established by Sunmaker Oil and Gas Institute, Shandong Vocational College of Science & Technology and Sunbelt Textile Company Limited. It will admit over 600 students per year.

Source: Xinhua

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EVFTA: Careful preparations to seize opportunities

With strong commitments on tariff elimination, the European Union - Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) is considered a highway to connect Vietnam with the vast EU market. However, opportunities will only come to enterprises who have been well prepared. Products must comply with rules of origin Vietnamese garments and textiles are considered one of the products that benefit the most from the EVFTA. However, enterprises can only enjoy such incentives if they meet rules of origin of goods. Thus, the Vietnam National Textile and Garment Group (Vinatex) has prepared thoroughly for years to satisfy the rules of origin of goods as required from its partners. Vinatex Executive Director Cao Huu Hieu said under the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), garment products must meet the yarn-forward rule of origin to enjoy preferences while the EVFTA stipulates fabric-forward rules which requires the use of fabrics produced in Vietnam with the only exception being of fabrics produced in the Republic of Korea (RoK), another FTA partner of the EU. Vietnam currently imports about 14% of fabric from RoK. To prepare for FTAs, Vinatex has long implemented many measures regarding investment and market development, as well as disseminating information to enterprises to understand FTAs thoroughly. The group also encourages its companies to establish a chain of links towards the goal of improving the product quality and lowering prices while satisfying rules of origin. Secretary General of the Vietnam Leather, Footwear and Handbags Association Phan Thi Thanh Xuan said China is now the biggest competitor of Vietnamese footwear in the world market. After the effectiveness of the EVFTA, the Vietnam's leather and footwear products will enjoy a tax gap of 3.5-4.2% compared to Chinese products when exporting to the EU, creating a huge competitive advantage for Vietnamese enterprises. The EU is also currently offering unilateral incentives for a large number of goods originating from Vietnam under the Generalised System of Preferences (GSP). In addition, the rules of origin stipulated in the EVFTA are not much different from GSP, so domestic leather and footwear enterprises can fully meet the stipulations. Since the beginning of 2019, Vietnamese exporters exporting goods to the EU need to self-verify their products origin, if they want to qualify for GSP. This is quite a large change for leather and footwear enterprises because they are currently following traditional practices and it will take time for them to get familiar with this change. However, the Association is trying to support businesses. “We realise that this is only a temporary difficulty and when enterprises get used to it, they will not face many obstacles in following these procedures, thus taking advantage of incentives when the EVFTA takes effect"- Xuan said. Agricultural products need to ensure quality and standards Along with garments, leather and footwear, agricultural products are also the group to benefit the most from the EVFTA. However, agricultural enterprises must meet the standards set out by EU countries to take advantage of EVFTA incentives. Phan Van Thuong, director of G.O.C Food Processing Export JSC, one of the enterprises handling many successful export orders to the EU, said that after the effectiveness of the EVFTA, tariffs on agricultural Vietnamese products to the EU will reduce significantly from 14% to 0%. This is a great opportunity for Vietnamese agricultural products to increase their turnover in this market. “However, enterprises must know that exports to the EU not only looks towards quantity, but also towards high value-added products. Then, enterprises will not only gain profits, but opportunities to invest in manpower, production technology, management capacity, thereby improving their competitiveness in the market”- Thuong said. On the other hand, the EU is a very fastidious market with strict requirements on safe material zones, fair trade, high technical standards in production, environmental protection, energy saving and policies for workers. When firms can successfully export their products to the EU, they can easily export to other markets including Northern Europe, America, Japan, RoK, and others as these markets usually apply EU standards. Deputy Secretary General of the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP) Nguyen Hoai Nam said that along with opportunities, Vietnamese seafood enterprises are faced with challenges on rules of origin, risks of trade defense measures and goods quality assurance. Therefore, enterprises need to proactively master commitments of Vietnam and its partners in order to meet requirements and standards on labour, environment and related issues of sustainable development, while building appropriate export plans. To conquer EU consumers, VASEP has planned to implement communication campaigns to promote images of Vietnamese seafood and information on improved quality and compliance of Vietnamese seafood with EU standards. VASEP has also carried out trade promotion programmes, including the participation in seafood trade fairs and exhibitions in EU countries to introduce high-quality tra fish products to local consumers. Meanwhile, Vietnamese seafood exporters are also aware of developing a self-contained production line from breeding, farming to processing to produce high quality products with the policy of competition based on quality and not prices for sustainable development, Nam emphasised. The EVFTA was officially signed on June 30, in Hanoi. After the signing, the EVFTA needs to be submitted to the European Parliament for consent. The trade deal will also be concluded by the European Council to enter into action. The deal is expected to take effect in 2020 and create many positive impacts on Vietnam’s export activities. Vietnam still has time to prepare for the deal and enterprises should continue to learn about the EU market demands and their requirements in order to make the best use of the deal.

Source: Nhan Dhan

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Germany to host 1st conference on cellulose fibres

The first International Conference on Cellulose Fibres will be held in February 2020, in Cologne. Cellulose fibres are the fastest growing fibre group in textiles, the largest investment sector in the bio-based economy and a way to avoid microplastics. High growth rates are due to the demand for natural fibres and issues such as microplastic pollution. Cellulose fibres are a success story within the textiles market with a cumulated annual growth rate (CAGR) of at least 10 per cent over the last ten years. This makes them the fastest growing fibre group in the textile industry and also the largest investment sector in the bio-based economy worldwide. The high growth rates are driven by the demand for natural fibres (and bottlenecks in cotton), the microplastic problem and possible bans for plastic fibres. All three drivers will continue to play a significant role in the future development of the sector. The conference during February 11-12 will cover the entire value chain from the lignocellulosic feedstock, dissolving pulp, cellulose fibres – such as rayon, viscose, modal or lyocell and new developments, to a wide range of applications, woven textiles (clothing) and non-wovens (wipes and technical applications), as well as micro- and nanocellulose for food, cosmetics and pharmaceuticals. All these sectors have significantly gained in dynamics over the last few years. Efforts are on to identify and develop new technologies and business opportunities for a sustainable bio-based and circular economy. The aim of the conference is to gather technology providers and developers, academia and industry, pulp, fibre and equipment suppliers, retailers and textile brands, policy makers and investors to debate recent market dynamics. Focus of the conference will be the recent technology and market trends, future market dynamics, identifying interested parties in this sector, challenges to develop the value chains and the market demand, ecosystems and partnerships to drive innovation according to market needs, the political environment, and issues such as plastic ban, microplastic avoidance, bio-based vs fossil feedstocks, and sustainability. “With regard to the importance of cellulose fibres, it is more than surprising that there is no established conference with this focus yet. We would now like to close this gap: For the first time, we will invite and gather all developers, producers and players in the value chain of modern cellulose fibres. We expect great international interest in this new conference. We are confident that this conference will be one of the best networking opportunities for this sector,” Michael Carus, CEO and initiator of the conference, said.

Source: Fibre2Fashion

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MoU inked with GIZ to improve garment sustainability

The Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Germany’s international development organisation, the Gesellschaft fur Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) yesterday. Heng Chivoan. The Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training on Tuesday signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Germany’s international development organisation, the Gesellschaft fur Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ). The MOU serves to implement the second phase of a multinational project aimed at improving the sustainability of the textile and garment sector. Ministry secretary of state Mom Vannak and GIZ Country Director Günter Riethmacher inked the agreement on the Promoting Sustainability in the Textile and Garment Industry in Asia (Fabric) project at the latter’s headquarters on Tuesday. Minister of Labour and Vocational Training Ith Sam Heng witnessed the signing ceremony. Implemented in Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, Myanmar and Pakistan since 2016, and Vietnam, which was just included this year, the project will be extended until March 31, 2021, and cost €6 million ($6.7 million).  In Cambodia, the collaboration is focused on information and contact exchanges between state and private institutions within the textile and garment sector, with national and regional levels. This is in order to strengthen compliance with sustainability standards “as stipulated in the Kingdom’s Labour Law and international conventions ratified by Cambodia”, the ministry said. Through the project, the GIZ “provided the ministry with financial and technical assistance to make the inspection system in Cambodia more transparent, effective and credible”. Moreover, “the ministry is [also] provided with aid to carry out actions in support of the strategic plan for gender mainstream in the labour and vocational training sector to promote gender equality and empower women who work in the textile and garment sector”. Speaking to reporters after the signing, Nguy Rith, the ministry’s undersecretary of state, said the project would enable Cambodia to “exchange good experiences with and learn from other countries involved in the project in regard to the successful implementation of sustainable practices in the sector”. Rith stressed: “We have obtained the achievements to the extent that work inspection groups, orders and manuals are established to solve conflicts for law enforcement participation. “This successful project enabled GIZ to establish a second project to promote social standards in up to six countries.” Since its inception in 2016 up to last year, he said the project had resulted in highly successful outcomes. Similarly, Sam Heng lauded the project, saying that the assistance provided by GIZ has improved the effectiveness of the work inspection system and conditions in the textile and garment sector. He noted that, so far this year, disputes in the industry had been solved more effectively. “Through this [project], I believe our aim to strengthen the sustainability of the sector would be accomplished successfully,” Sam Heng said.

Source:  Phnom Penhpost

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