Staff Reporter

Do not wait for State aid, private sector told Exporters must hone their merchandising skill to win over global buyers

KARUR: There is an urgent need for establishing more textile parks to boost exports and meet demands in the world market.

Private players should come forward to establish the parks in identified clusters without waiting for State financial assistance and then utilise the aid as it comes by, according to Nagesh M. Mugadur, Joint Textile Commissioner, Mumbai.

In particular, hi-tech weaving parks incorporating weaving units, garment made-ups and knitting units should be given preference in establishing the parks. Entrepreneurs in Tamil Nadu should concentrate in establishing such parks to retain their international market share and improve on that, Mr. Mugadur said speaking at a workshop on `Impact of WTO on Textile Industry' sponsored by the Confederation of Indian Industry, Tiruchi Zone, here on Friday. Expeditious establishment of integrated hi-tech weaving parks would greatly benefit exporters, he added.

Mr. Mugadur pointed out that of the 26 integrated textile parks sanctioned, only five were in the State. He also wanted the textile exporters in the State to hone their merchandising skill to win over international buyers to their side.

Pointing out that exporters from the State got a lion's share of Rs. 6.630 crore under the Technology Upgradation Fund (TUF) scheme, Mr. Mugadur, however, added that at least Rs. 4,000 crore of that fund was utilised by the spinning sector.

While the market need was for ready-to-use goods and that too particularly from units having entire integrated production chain in a single platform, the extremely high utilisation of funds by the spinning sector alone did not bode well. He wanted the other sectors of the textile trade to grab the opportunity.

By 2010, the various sectors of the textile industry in the country would require five million skilled workers.

To meet the demand, existing and new industrial training institutions should make use of the Rs. 2.5 crore interest-free loans being offered by the Centre as seed capital to develop their units as centres of excellence, Mr. Mugadur noted. In the eyes of a vast segment of the international buying community, India stood better compared to say China due to factors such as reliability, relationship building beyond business, credibility and such other factors.

Make good use of such positive factors to build on trade ties, he reminded the exporters.

Beyond expectations

D. Bandyopadhyay, Deputy Director, Regional Textile Commissioner's Office, Coimbatore, making a presentation on the TUF scheme and Social Security Scheme, said that the extension of the TUF scheme for another five years was well beyond the expectations of the industry.

B.V. Ramanan, Chairman, CII-Tiruchi zone, pointed out that it was important for textile exporters to understand the World Trade Organisation regime and its implications on textile industry. CII was however of the view that the bilateral trade negotiations should not substitute but complement the multilateral trade negotiations under the Doha Development Agenda of the WTO.

Enhanced market access to Indian goods and services in various countries should be facilitated, he added.