KOCHI: The budget proposal to infuse Rs 1,200 crore to breathe life into the ailing coir sector has revived the hopes of the industry’s survival. Export unit owners, handloom mill owners, weavers and the workers have hailed the proposal as the right move for restructuring the crisis-ridden traditional industry.Federation of Indian Coir Exporters Associations (FICEA) chairman Jose Paul Mathew, who is also the managing director of Palm Fibre India Pvt Ltd, said the government plan to revive and support the handloom sector is proactive.
“The export units procure products from the handloom sector and the government initiative will help the industry tide over crisis. We hope the amount is utilised for sector’s development. There is a practice of utilising government allocation to write off the accumulated loss of the public sector units and cooperative societies. We expect a professional intervention to revamp industry,” he said.
According to Sudarshanan, owner of Shanker Coir Mills, a handloom unit in Alappuzha, the government should help the small scale units install automatic and semi-automatic looms so that the workload and physical exertion of the labourers can be reduced. “The handloom sector is experiencing a severe shortage of manpower. It will be helpful if the government provides a subsidy to establish defibering and spinning units and include them in the employment guarantee scheme,” he said.