Southern Gujarat Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SGCCI) and Pandesara Weavers jointly submitted a representation to the Ministry of Commerce and the Confederation of Indian Industries (CII) demanding imposition of import duty on Chinese fabrics to protect small and medium enterprises in Surat. The SGCCI has raised concerns that import of heavily under-invoiced fabrics from China has crossed Rs 5,500 crores in the last one year, but could be worth Rs 10,000 crores.
SGCCI president P M Shah stated the government of China provides heavy subsidy to its textiles industry. This has reduced the production cost per unit in China making difficult for the powerloom weavers to survive here.
Pandesara Weavers president Ashish Gujarati says the quality of fabrics imported from China are made of man-made and synthetic fibres as cotton is expensive in China compared to India. This fabric has caused a surge in demand to India's SMEs in Surat.
He stated India despite having production capacity has lost production leading to massive unemployment. Import of fabrics are taking place at unit price of Rs 5 to Rs 15 per square metre. This price is unbelievably low for any kind of fabric as a simple handkerchief costs more than Rs 5 per piece in the market. Therefore, the cost of fabrics should be at least Rs 50 per metre.
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