Stitch World - - NEWS - Deepak Mo­hin­dra Editor-in-Chief

A change is in­evitable now. All be­cause of the few in­ci­dents that have hap­pened or are go­ing to hap­pen…

Last year was the most un­event­ful year for ex­ports in a long time…, maybe it was a year in brood­ing. The ex­port growth fig­ures were down and the do­mes­tic mar­ket was de­pressed due to de­mon­e­ti­za­tion and fear of GST (some are com­par­ing it to the Y2K virus, which cre­ated such a hype at the turn of the cen­tury but fiz­zled out to noth­ing).

I be­lieve that fear is big­ger than re­al­ity…, yet there are gen­uine concerns, mainly be­cause of the lack of clar­ity and im­ple­men­ta­tion hur­dles. In the mean­while, the tex­tile in­dus­try is di­vided on how the re­forms would impact busi­nesses along the sup­ply chain, though there is a con­vic­tion that it would have a pos­i­tive in­flu­ence on the com­pet­i­tive­ness in the long run.

The re­cently con­cluded Tex­tiles In­dia 2017 ex­trav­a­ganza was a breed­ing spot for dis­cus­sions and the four ma­jor concerns with re­gard to GST that emerged are: Ac­cu­mu­la­tion of credit at ev­ery level of the chain; Im­ported fab­ric to be cheaper than do­mes­tic fab­ric; 18 per cent ser­vice tax on ap­parel job work to make out­sourc­ing un­vi­able; and 18 per cent GST on MMF and Yarn serv­ing as a se­vere blow to the syn­thetic sec­tor.

Though the Govern­ment has as­sured a re­view and re­vi­sion af­ter three months, the in­dus­try is on the back foot. While de­mon­e­ti­za­tion brought in lack of funds to source raw ma­te­ri­als and pay wages, GST has brought un­cer­tainty, thereby fur­ther crip­pling the sys­tem.

As if this was not enough, the Delhi Govern­ment has in­creased min­i­mum wages by 50%... I am not even sure if the in­dus­try can sur­vive af­ter such a huge blow… Where are the mar­gins to ab­sorb this in­crease?

Though the hon­ourable court has re­served the de­ci­sion till 11th Septem­ber, I doubt if the court will even­tu­ally ‘stay’ the move.

With all this hap­pen­ing, the only way to sur­vive is to move to places like Jhark­hand, Odisha, Te­lan­gana and other states where the Govern­ment is pro-ac­tive in build­ing infrastructure and is of­fer­ing in­cen­tives to the in­dus­try to come in, in­clud­ing a re­bate on wages. Jhark­hand al­ready has three big­wigs set­ting up units there – Ori­ent Craft, Shahi Ex­ports and Ma­trix Cloth­ing…, and I am sure oth­ers will fol­low suit soon.

I sin­cerely be­lieve that this is the best and the only way for the in­dus­try to grow now!

In the mean­while, things are get­ting tough on the re­tail front also with stores clo­sure and fre­quently chang­ing con­sumer de­mands putting pres­sure on re­tail­ers to be faster than their com­peti­tors in plac­ing their prod­ucts on the shelves. Ram Sa­reen, Founder, Tukat­ech shares with our read­ers how the long sheets of tech packs can­not keep pace with the evolv­ing fash­ion in­dus­try. It is the dig­i­tal plat­form that should be the new com­mu­ni­ca­tion lan­guage be­tween de­sign­ers and tech­ni­cal team. Longer the re­tail­ers rely on out­dated means, sooner they will be out of busi­ness.

An­other trend which is tak­ing fash­ion to a next level is ‘ath­leisure’. Driven by mil­len­ni­als’ fit­ness-con­scious be­hav­iour, ath­leisure is the new take of the town. Fad or clas­sic, ath­leisure is not go­ing to lose its charm in the com­ing years. Two of In­dian sports­wear man­u­fac­tur­ers, Paragon Ap­par­els and Cre­ative Clothex, have launched their own ath­leisure brands in the mar­ket to tap the po­ten­tial mar­ket in In­dia.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from India

© PressReader. All rights reserved.