Fearing losing out to competition the Bangladeshi textile industry, Ludhiana’s hosiery manufacturers have submitted a memorandum to the prime minister demanding level playing field for the industry in India.
Narender Miglani, general secretary of Ludhiana-based Knitwear Club Limited,says the government’s move to grant duty-free access to 48 garment products from Bangladesh in 2011 has baffled the hosiery textile industries. According to Miglani, the duty-free imports from Bangladesh is affecting the business in Ludhiana.
“Both hosiery and textile manufacturers back home in Ludhiana are losing out on business. This year, we have observed a shrinking in the volume of business, with fewer orders.”
Factors such as labour cost, infrastructure, bank interest, power cost and production cost are cheaper in Bangladesh, which gives it an edge over India. Moreover, buyers prefer products from Bangladesh as they are cheaper.
Miglani said that in order to compete with Bangladesh, a level playing field should be offered to Indian players. He said that government needs to do a comprehensive analysis of the treaty with Bangladesh in order to protect the interests of India’s textile industry.
Ludhiana has around 12,000 small and medium knitwear and textile units that employ over 4 lakh people directly or indirectly. Miglani says the treaty threatens employment, as the textile industry is the second largest employment generator in India after agriculture.