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CHAIRMAN PAGE

Let me start by first wishing each one of you and your families a very happy, healthy and prosperous Diwali!

As you are aware, in the last fortnight and just preceding the Festival of Lights, the Council held its annual export awards function to felicitate the exporters who achieved excellence in exports in various categories listed in the scheme of awards. The glittering ceremony was organised on 3rd November 2018 in the Regency Ballroom of the Hyatt Regency, Mumbai with the Hon’ble Minister of Textiles, Smt. Smriti Zubin Irani as the Chief Guest.

I congratulate all the Award Winners once again for emerging leaders in their respective line of businesses during a challenging year. I was also happy to note that this year, out of the 36 companies receiving the award in various categories, 7 companies received the prestigious award for the first time. Another novel feature of this year’s Awards was the introduction of the Award for highest employment generated during fiscal 2017-18, including women employment.

We hope that in the future there will be more member companies who can win the Texprocil Award and show their unwavering commitment to contribute to the national mission of creating large scale employment in the country. We wish all our members success in their future endeavours.

The Hon’ble Minister of Commerce and Civil Aviation, Shri Suresh Prabhu was kind enough to send a video recorded message congratulating he winners of the Texprocil Awards which was played during the function. He also assured full support to the industry from the Ministry of Commerce.

We are happy to note that the Hon’ble Minister of Textiles, Smt. Smriti Zubin Irani, in her speech mentioned that the Texprocil Award Function celebrated excellence, growth and innovation on a single platform and even congratulated the Council for celebrating people by instituting an award for the highest employment generation.

The Hon’ble Minister complimented the Council on setting a benchmark in terms of positive growth in the sector despite domestic and international challenges. She exhorted that the Council should make every effort to excel the benchmark and double its exports. She also appreciated the Council’s efforts to sensitize the Government regularly on various issues faced by the industry.

The Hon’ble Minister assured us of full support by the Ministry of Textiles in increasing exports. This will go a long way in instilling confidence and provide added motivation to the stakeholders of the industry.

Given the positive growth of 26.8% in cotton textile exports for the first 6 months in the current fiscal, we are hopeful that exports would touch an all-time high in 2018-19 compared to any of the previous years.  While the Council is actively pursuing with the government the need to address various concerns in the wake of the global challenges, we as stakeholders also have the responsibility to act swiftly by devising our own specific strategies that will help us tide over these challenges.

Recent MSME Package Announcement

The package for the MSMEs announced by the Hon’ble Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi on November 5, 2018 is a major innovative initiative. Increase in the Interest subvention on pre-shipment and post–shipment finance for exports by MSMEs from 3% to 5% will give the much needed boost to the sector. Further, GST-registered MSMEs will get 2% interest rebate on incremental loan upto Rs. One Crore. The facility of fast in-principle approval of loans up to Rs 1 crore has come as a huge relief to the MSMEs as this sector generally finds it difficult to raise bank finance for exports.  The Ministry of Textiles has sought suggestions on these package from the Council. The Council will be sending its suggestion shortly based on inputs from the exporters.

Ease of Doing Business

It is also a proud moment for all of us as India’s rank in the World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business 2019 survey climbed 23 places to 77 among 190 countries surveyed, making it the only country to rank among the top 10 improvers for the second consecutive year. The World Bank has confirmed that starting a business in India has been made easier through consolidation of multiple application forms and introduction of a goods and services tax (GST). 

In order to celebrate this commendable performance the Hon’ble Minister of Commerce and Civil Aviation, hosted an OPEN HOUSE at his residence on 8th November 2018, which was attended by the Executive Director and myself at the Meet. The Hon’ble Minister assured us of the full support from the Commerce Ministry in increasing textile exports.

Intex South Asia 2018

The 4th edition of Intex South Asia 2018 fair was held during 14-16 November 2018 at the Bandaranaike Memorial International Hall (BMICH) in Colombo, Sri Lanka. The organisers offered a complimentary information booth to the Council to showcase the strength exporters in the supply of choicest T&C products to the world and to receive enquiries from the international visitors interested to source from India. The Council’s booth saw a good number of visitors and enquiries received are being separately circulated to the trade.

That apart, the Council was also invited to other buyer networking initiatives undertaken at the fair including ‘Fashion Fiesta’ and an interactive Seminar titled “Industry and Apparel 4.0” for which I was invited to represent the Indian side along with other key representatives from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka to have a dialogue on the ‘Prospects of South Asian Trade and Cooperation’. The discussions were well received by all those present.

64th AGM of TEXPROCIL

The Council proposes to hold its 64th AGM on November 29, 2018 in Mumbai.
My tenure in the Council, as Chairman TEXPROCIL for over last two years has been full of challenges but was truly fulfilling as we set out on the mission to promote Indian Cotton textiles globally alongside with consistent redressal of exporters’ grievances and articulated delivery of arguments to the policy makers and trade alike - supported by data.

Thanks for the unstinting support received from Vice Chairman Dr K V Srinivasan; my fellow colleagues in the Committee of Administration and the TEXPROCIL team as well. As I demit office, and hand over the charge to my successor, I am happy to note that the industry has become well aware about the need to produce value added items encouraging many of our entrepreneurs to make innovative products. 

Future Outlook

As far as the future is concerned, global economy is recovering and thus exports should get a boost. The IMF’s latest World Economic Outlook report has predicted that the global economy is expected to grow at 3.7 per cent this year and next year and the total global good and services flow are expected to grow by 4.2 per cent this year and 4 per cent next year. This should make the exporters optimistic and look forward to encouraging times. Further, the GST system is settling down leading to streamlining of operations. All in all, India is better poised to increase exports of cotton textiles in the coming months.

Friends, while challenges are huge, opportunities are also growing as well. The ongoing trade war between the US and China can open up new opportunities for cotton textiles exports. The Government is in the process of putting in place alternate schemes to promote exports which will improve the competitiveness of the products in the export markets. The Council has already commissioned a study in this regard and a report of the outcome will be released shortly.

Against this backdrop, the dynamism and entrepreneurship of the exporters combined with the policy support provided by the Government will certainly take exports of cotton textiles to greater heights in the days to come.

Ujwal Lahoti
Chairman