COIMBATORE: The Parliamentary Standing Committee on Labour on Tuesday assured the textile industry of considering its appeals and making suitable recommendations so that Tamil Nadu, especially Tirupur and Coimbatore, prospers in man-made fibre (MMF) textile-manufacturing.
The panel interacted with the National Committee on Textiles & Clothing (NCTC). The NCTC comprises Confederation of Indian Textile Industry (CITI), Apparel Export Promotion Council (AEPC), Cotton Textiles Export Promotion Council, Synthetic & Rayon Textiles Export Promotion Council, Powerloom Development Export Promotion Council, Indian Technical Textile Association and Tirupur Exporters Association (TEA).
NCTC coordinator T Rajkumar and AEPC chairman Dr A Sakthivel told the committee that Tamil Nadu, being the largest textile manufacturing state accounting for one-thirds of the textile business of the nation, has the potential to attract new investments.
Since the country, particularly Tamil Nadu, has reached saturation point in the manufacture of cotton textiles and clothing products, there is a scope to grab opportunities thrown by China, especially in the post-COVID-19 scenario, if a conducive policy is announced for MMF textiles and clothing products, a NCTC press release said.
The anti-dumping duty and customs duty protection given for the domestic manufacturers and 18 per cent GST on MMF and 12 per cent GST on MMF yarn have been curtailing the growth of the MMF sector.
The country could not import even speciality fibres that are not manufactured by it under nil duty. The MMF raw materials are produced by only a few manufacturers. Cotton produced by over six million farmers does not attract any duty and made available cheaper than the international price.
MMF being expensive upto 23 per cent, there was the need to recommend removal of anti-dumping duty and also slotting the entire MMF value chain under 5 per cent GST rate on par with cotton value chain apart from addressing inverted duty structure issues at processing and capital goods.
Since the new labour codes would be implemented shortly, NCTC has sought certain amendments in the new codes to ensure ease of doing business. Fixing uniform minimum wages across the country for all trades/job roles is essential to create a level-playing field.
NCTC also appealed to the parliamentary committee to advise state governments to avoid applying Juvenile Justice Act that defines the child labour as below 18 years below while Factories Act permits employment of adolescent workers aged between 16 and 18 subject to certain conditions.
Tamil Nadu textiles and clothing industry pays highest wages rates and better welfare faclities to the workers, which was evident from millions of migrant workers coming to the state from different parts of the country and employed in the state.
The officials from the Ministry of Textiles briefed about the various schemes and recommendations made by the Ministry to facilitate global competitiveness and enhance MMF production in the country. The Parliamentary Standing Committee is chaired by Bhartruhari Mahtab and MPs K Subbarayan (Tirupur) and Shanmugam (Rajya Sabha).
They visited Tirupur and Coimbatore to study the potential for the growth of MMF textile industry.