The bicycle industry on Wednesday urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to not include bicycle vertical under the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) trade agreement, claiming it will allow 'free flow' of Chinese bicycles into India.
"If bicycle sector is included in the list of RCEP, Indian bicycle industry will collapse," United Cycle and Parts Manufacturers Association President D S Chawla said.
Six associations of bicycle industry, including All India Cycle Manufacturers Association, Engineering Exports Association,urged Prime Minister to exclude bicycle sector from RCEP.
RCEP is being negotiated among 10 Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) members -- Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam -- and their six trade partners -- Australia, China, India, Japan, Korea and New Zealand.
Free flow of Chinese products, particularly bicycle and its parts, will lead to large scale unemployment in the country, Chawla said here.
He said that about 1.25 crore people directly or indirectly earn their livelihood from bicycle industry in India.
India manufactured 1.31 crorebicycles per annum in 2001 as compared with 5.5 crore in China.
"Now after 19 years, we have just touched just 1.75 crore as compared to nearly 17 crore by China," he said.
He claimed that China was pushing hard to "dump" its surplus bicycles in India.
The domestic bicycle industry would not be able to compete if bicycle is included in RCEP, Hero Cycles Chairman S K Rai said.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)