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Textile exports fell 13% in FY21 on COVID-19 impact

‘Ready-made garments declined 20.78%’, Textile and apparel exports in 2020-2021 are almost 13% less (in dollar terms) than the previous year, provisional data available with the Cotton Textiles Export Promotion Council shows. The exports were worth $29 billion last year as against $34 billion in 2019-2020. Exports of ready-made garments declined 20.78% last financial year compared with the previous year, while exports of man-made textile items fell 21.20 %.Siddhartha Rajagopal, the executive director of the council, said exports of cotton textiles had declined 2.12%. This was mainly because of the COVID spread and its impact on exports last April and May. However, all textile and clothing segments, including carpet, jute, apparel, and MMF products, showed significant growth in March this year and this trend is said to have continued in April too, Mr. Rajagopal said. The final data, expected later this month, may be better even for overall textile exports in 2020-2021. Textile and clothing exports are expected to do well at least till June since countries such as the U.S. and U.K. are looking up and China has also started buying. “We expect this year to be better than last year,” he added. Even for apparel exports, the industry is anticipating a revival in global demand during the current financial year. A. Sakthivel, chairman of Apparel Export Promotion Council, pointed out that in April last year, apparel exports were just $127 million, while last month it was $1,294 million dollars. With the current trend, the industry can look at a 20% growth in apparel exports this financial year. However, it also depends on the pandemic and its impact world over.

Source : The Hindu

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Surat: Two groups of various associations of the textile industry

Surat: Two groups of various associations of the textile industry met city police commissioner Ajay Tomar on Wednesday with different requests for relaxation in the lockdown norms. However, demands of both the groups were turned down by Tomar. One of the groups is now planning to approach the state government through ministers and MLAs with the same requests. The restrictions to keep the commercial complexes closed have been extended by the government till May 12 to contain the spread of coronavirus.

The Federation of Surat Textile Traders Association (FOSTTA) requested that shops be allowed to remain open for few hours so that the businessmen can to complete their banking work. The FOSTTA didn’t demand for the markets to be allowed to open for the usual business. The other group consisting Southern Gujarat Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SGCCI), The Federation of Gujarat Weavers Association (FOGWA), Surat Mercantile Association (SMA) and South Gujarat Textile Processors’ Association (SGTPA) met the police commissioner separately and demanded that the markets to be allowed to remain open from 10 am to 4 pm.

SGCCI formed a Textile Task Force with representatives of FOGWA, SGTPA, SMA and others. In a meeting of the task force it was planned to make representation to the police and government to allow the markets to remain open for business-to business transactions. It was also proposed that the markets can be allowed to remain open on odd-even formula. “The committee proposed that the market should be allowed to remain open for business-to-business transactions while keeping the restrictions on for the retail customers. But the city police commissioner has turned down our requests. Now, we are making the representation to the government through ministers and MLAs,” said Dinesh Navadiya, president, SGCCI. “We do not agree with the task force’s demands. But FOSTTA was demanding that we should be allowed to open our shops for a couple of hours so that we can complete our banking transactions. We respect the decision since it is needed to contain the spread of the infection,” said Manoj Agarwal, president FOSTTA

Source: Times of India

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Surat's textile entrepreneur Ajay Ajmera conferred with Champions of Change Award

Surat (Gujarat) Ajay Ajmera, CO of Ajmera Fashion, a textile entrepreneur from Surat has been awarded the Champions of Change Award for his excellence in the field of women empowerment. The city's textile entrepreneur Ajay Ajmera has done commendable work in the direction of making women self-reliant. With this award, Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant and Shripad Nayak Minster, Ministry of AYUSH, former chairman of Censor Board Anish Bajmi, film star Hemamalini, Susmita San, Sonu Nigam, Sonu Sood, Shatrughan Sinha, Raj KK Many champions including Purohit, Iqbal Singh Chahal, Commissioner BM Singh were also honored by the Governor of Maharashtra and Goa, Bhagat Singh Koshyari for their outstanding work.

More than 3500 women made self-reliant

Textile entrepreneur Ajay Ajmera has made more than 3500 women self-reliant by providing self-employment to women for almost 10 years. Through them, the self-employed women are joining the textile sector and giving the message of self-reliance. Textile entrepreneur Ajay Ajmera said that so far, more than 3500 women have been linked with employment by making them self-sufficient. At the same time, many women have joined us for employment from India and more than 30 countries. Social media proved to be the most effective for us for this work. People trusted us, that's why today we are becoming meaningful in making people self-reliant in the field of textiles. Those who do excellent work in social and community services get this award The Champions of Change is an Indian award for promoting Gandhian values, (voluntary), community service and social development (in the Aspirational District in India), selected by constitutional jurors. Balakrishnan, former Chief Justice of India and former Chairman NHRC. It is given annually in four categories, and is usually presented by the President, the Vice-President, the Prime Minister of India, or a prominent figure. Shri Nandan Jha is the founder and head of the Champions of Change Award.

Source: Business Standard

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Punjab FM writes to Sitharaman, seeks immediate GST Council meeting

Congress leader and Punjab Finance Minister Manpreet Badal Wednesday demanded a GST Council meeting immediately for serious mid-term corrections on tax issues, saying the federal body has not met for six months now. In a letter to Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, he said the GST Council has to meet to discuss key issues relating to taxation and GST rules being framed without states' assent."We hope that the GST Council meets soon as we would like to review the rules of the GST Council and address certain pending issues," he told a virtual press conference later, adding if a meeting is held through video-conference, the voting procedure should be intimated in advance. "I am hoping that the finance minister would respond positively and also with the spirit with which the letter has been written to her," he said.

Badal said some issues that require urgent discussion in the context of Covid-19 are whether GST be exempted on hand sanitisers, face masks, gloves, PPE kits, temperature-check equipment, oximetres, ventilators and the like. Badal lamented that the states have given away their rights to the Centre and "we now feel cheated" as the government has changed certain rules without consulting the states. "They have carried out substantive changes in the rules without consulting states and without taking state legislatures into account, due to which businessmen are being harrassed and intimidated," he alleged "We have voting rights, but the meetings are not happening," he said. He alleged that established businessmen are being harrassed under the garb of these rules, which were framed primarily to curb fly-by-night operators. Senior Congress leader and former Union minister Jairam Ramesh supported Badal's demand.
"He has raised some very important issues on GST that require urgent action. Hope Madam FM will consider in the spirit with which the GST Council was set up, that hasn't met for 6 months now," Ramesh tweeted. Badal also said the GST is in the formative years and unless corrective measures are taken now, things will go out of hand and the malaise will spread. "I hope corrective steps are taken and these pending issues resolved at the next meeting to be convened soon," he said. On whether Punjab would go in for a lockdown to curb the spread of coronavirus, he said, the state has taken a slightly different route and restrictions are already in place.

"We do not want to prolong the misery of businessmen and the industry," he said, but added oxygen, life-saving drugs and vaccines are in short supply in the state. Badal, who is a member of the GST Council, said he is writing on the GST issue when the country is in the middle of battling the new wave of Covid-9 which is more devastating in many ways than the one before.

I have been particularly persuaded to write this letter because there has been no meeting of the GST Council for the last six months even though council's own rules drafted in terms of Article 279A of the Constitution provide for holding at least one meeting every quarter," he said.

Badal said the GST revenues constitute nearly 50 per cent of the tax revenues of states, while this percentage for the Centre is nearly half of that. States have a voting share of 75 per cent in the GST Council."However, failure to hold any constructive consultation with states for so long in such critical times makes me wonder whether the Centre has usurped all the power of states putting the spirit of cooperative federalism, that formed the very foundation of achieving consensus on the epic reform, on the back burner," it said. He also pointed that the Centre had not appointed a vice chair to the council from among the states. The Punjab finance minister said a number of provisions have been enacted in recent times through the route of subordinate legislation (rules) bypassing both the GST Council as well as the legislatures. "It is the basic principle of justice system that substantive rights of a person cannot be taken away except by a due process of law. The recent amendments in GST Rules (like restricting tax credits) have far reaching implications and have been made without even of an iota of discussion in the council," he said. Badal also highlighted that harassment of taxpayers has taken an entirely new dimension with officers resorting to threats of arrest, provisional attachment of productive assets and freezing of bank accounts without any established norms. "I'm informed it is difficult to repair a bad tax system if not done in the formative years," the Congress leader said."The promise of assured compensation does provide a ready catalyst for such a mid-course correction for some more time," he said.

Source: Economic Times

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PAN not must for hedge funds operating in IFSCs

Foreign hedge funds can now operate in International Financial Services Centres in the country without getting a permanent account number, or PAN. Foreign investors of category III alternative investment funds (AIFs) operating in IFSCs will not require PAN if they deduct tax from their income and provide details of investors’ name, address, country of residence and Tax Identification Numbers every quarter, the Central Board of Direct Taxes notified on Tuesday.

Category III AIFs include hedge funds. The board had already granted this exemption to foreign investors of AIF categories I and II. The move follows a representation by International Financial Services Centres Authority (IFSCA), an official said, adding, “This would pave way for a large number of categorie III AIF establishing a base in IFSCs".

Source: Economic Times

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Pakistan textile co grabs IKEA's ‘Affordable Sustainability’ award

Pakistan’s vertically integrated textile mills, Mustaqim Dyeing and Printing Industries Private Limited were awarded the affordability sustainability award from furniture manufacturing giant IKEA. “Mustaqim just got the award of “Affordable Sustainability” from IKEA. Mustaqim Pakistan is the only textile company in the world, getting this award from IKEA for this precious category,” said Advisor to Prime Minister on Trade and Investment Abdul Razak Dawood in a tweet post on Wednesday.

“A proud moment for the fraternity and the country,” added Dawood. By transforming recycle plastic bottles into sheets and covers Mustaqim has decreased CO2 emission and saved thousands of barrels of oil, while still reducing the cost said IKEA during the award ceremony. “We are working hard for the past many years but this has come as an amazing surprise,” said Mustaqim Textile. It is pertinent to mention that Mustaqim was established in 1994.

The company started its operation from commission printing and after having the edge in printing skills, started export in 1997. The company manufactures and export home textile products all over the world.

Source: Business Recorder

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EURATEX Welcomes Revamped EU Industry Strategy, But Calls For Consistency Across EU Policies

BRUSSELS —Europe’s industry is going through turbulent times as a result of the corona-pandemic; turnover in textiles and clothing sector dropped between 10 and 20%. However, even bigger challenges lie ahead: serious disruptions in supply chains, soaring energy prices and protective tendencies are threatening the competitiveness of our industry. Against that background, the revised EU Industry Strategy – launched today – is addressing very relevant issues, and underlines the need to think carefully about Europe’s industrial base. EURATEX welcomes the initiative, including the focus on 14 “eco-systems” and the proposal to develop privileged partnerships with trusted partners.

At the same time, EURATEX calls for more consistency by the EU across its different policy areas. Director General Dirk Vantyghem commented: “We welcome the recognition that we need a strong industrial base in Europe, but at the same time are struggling to maintain that base, as our companies face significant challenges related to over-regulation and raising energy and supply costs. It feels like one hand offering you help, while the other hand squeezes you tight”. Looking at the global perspective, EURATEX is not calling to close the European borders; our industrial model relies on accessing global markets.

But clearly, there is a need to establish global rules to ensure fair competition, and make sure these rules are properly implemented and controlled. Also today’s proposal to address distortions caused by foreign subsidies in the Single Market, should be welcomed in this context. Dirk Vantyghem concluded: “European textiles and clothing industry went through turbulent times. Today, as part of this new EU Industry Strategy, we have an opportunity to build a new business model, based on innovation, quality, sustainability and fairness. We look forward to develop that new EU Textile strategy with all stakeholders involved.”

Source: Textile World

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US- based AII & Legambiente to lead supply chain programme in Italy

Apparel Impact Institute (AII), a leading organisation for driving scalable solutions for the apparel and footwear industry, has announced Legambiente as the local partner for implementing its programme to accelerate and realise positive environmental impact in Italy’s supply chain. Legambiente is an Italian non-profit organisation founded in 1980.

AII launched what has informally become known as the ‘Italy Project’ at the end of 2020, creating a partnership with international fashion brands Burberry, Kering and Stella McCartney, and incorporating a prioritised group of Italian manufacturers. Once the commitment was made to establish a platform for Italian manufacturers through which to coordinate funding and scaling programmes with measurable Impact, AII sought a partner in Italy with the ability to provide local expertise and advocacy while overseeing implementation of the programme at local manufacturing sites. Legambiente has agreed to take on this role and aims for long-term partnership between itself and AII, according to a press release by AII. AII and Legambiente’s approach in Italy will leverage the decade-long success of Clean by Design, a proven approach for identifying opportunities in production facilities to improve operational and environmental efficiency, to provide a comprehensive system that lowers energy, water and chemical use in textile mills. Initially, Legambiente’s role will focus on project management and execution against an established timing and action.

They will also coordinate and grow the programme via in-country programme activities, such as in-person events, on-site visits and training, according to AII. Meanwhile, AII will provide quality assurance during the pilot phase of programme deployment and closely support Legambiente to prepare for its management role. Additionally, outside consultants will carry out on-site visits to identify improvement opportunities, provide ongoing technical support and prepare reports demonstrating facility progress.

“This project presents an interesting challenge from an environmental point of view for a historically complex sector. We strongly believe that the realisation of this project can bring concrete environmental benefits, and we hope it will arouse interest, given the various positive experiences that have been increasing in recent years that put the environmental and social sustainability of fashion supply chains at the centre of the challenge,” Giorgio Zampetti, general manager of Legambiente said in a statement. “The last year has been particularly challenging for many players in the apparel and footwear industry. Our partnership with Legambiente and leading fashion brands positions environmental stewardship at the centre of the industry’s recovery in Italy,” Kurt Kipka, AII’s vice president of programmes said.

Source: Fibre2fashion

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