Fabrics & Processing | News & Insights | Textile Industry

Textile Ministry Vows to Curb Influx of Cheap Knitted Fabric Imports

Published: January 24, 2024

In a recent Textile Advisory Group (TAG) meeting held in the Capital, the Ministry of Textiles has given its assurance to address the issue of cheap imports of knitted fabrics flooding the Indian textile supply chain. At the meeting, concerns were raised regarding the unlawful import of Chinese knitted fabrics mixed with woven fabrics, resulting in the under-utilisation of the entire Indian textile industry.

Mr R. K. VIJ, representing the PTA Users Association, highlighted the significant impact of this influx on domestic weaving, processing, dyeing, and spinning units, which are facing imminent closure. He emphasised that the major discrepancy in customs duties between woven and knitted fabrics is exacerbating the problem. Mr Vij suggested a simple and immediate solution of aligning the customs duties of knitted fabrics with woven fabrics.

The TAG meeting, chaired by Commerce and Textile Minister Mr. Piyush Goyal and attended by State Textile Minister Ms. Darshna Jardosh, witnessed unanimous support from industry representatives to rectify the issue promptly. Textile Secretary Ms Rachna Shah, Textile Commissioner Ms Roop Rashi, Trade Advisor Ms Shubhra, and representatives from various associations, ministries, and companies were also present.

Mr Vij estimated that the government is incurring an annual revenue loss of Rs. 6000-7000 crores due to the lower custom duty tax on knitted fabrics. These imports not only impact revenue but also create intense competition for Indian weavers, who are forced to sell underpriced fabrics to match the undervalued Chinese imports. He urged the government to set a minimum import price of US dollars 4.5 to 5.0 per kg for knitted fabrics, as the current prices are as low as US dollars 1.40 to 1.50 per kg.

Following the meeting, Mr Vij confirmed the prompt understanding of the issue by Mr Piyush Goyal, Ms Darshah Jardosh, and the Textile Secretary. It is expected that the Textile Ministry will take immediate action to prevent the illegal, undervalued import of grey and dyed knitted fabrics into India within the next two months.

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