New Textile Policy for Gujarat Before Elections Political Gimmick or Serious Business Goals?

SURAT UPDATE

♦New Textile Policy for Gujarat Before Elections Political Gimmick or Serious Business Goals?



Just before Gujarat elections, the Gujarat government has announced Garments & Apparel Policy 2017. Mostly going through a rough patch post demonitisation and GST, Gujarat textile and apparel industry feels that the elections is just an eyewash to calm the textile industry which is going through a very difficult time. The policy was, announced by Gujarat CM Vijay Rupani envisages achieving the complete textile and garment value chain of 5Fs from farm to fibre, fibre to fabric, fabric to fashion, and fashion to foreign markets. According to him, the decision was taken to encourage new investments in garment making as the state has many advantages that can be a big boost for apparel manufacturing. Being the largest cotton producer Gujarat is already supplying cotton to other states. “It is time we encourage our entrepreneurs to invest in garmenting,” said Rupani while making the announcement at a press meet.

Under the policy, garment unit owners would get incentive for generating employment in the form of subsidy in wages. While the subsidy amount would be Rs 3,500 per month for male workers, it would be Rs 4,000 per month for female workers Gujarat already has large spinning capacity with 25 lakh spindles installed and adding weaving and garmenting would make it possible to achieve the complete textiles and apparel value chain. “Our aim is to provide employment to women and create investment opportunities in the complete value chain from cotton to fabric to clothing,” said Rupani. Rupani also announced setting up of 16 new industrial estates under the Gujarat Industrial Development Corporation (GIDC). According to him, these GIDCs will unlock the growth in remote areas and SMEs. These GIDCs,

spread across 2,400 hectares in 16 villages, will have the potential to accommodate about 15,000 factories. The total estimated employment generation is about 100,000.”

However, announcing policy just few months before the state goes for Assembly elections has been observed by most of the industry players as a political move. The state government has claimed that the policy would create jobs in garmenting among small units. The policy aims to retain use of cotton grown in the state by boosting the textile value chain of farm, fibre, fabric, fashion and foreign (exports). Earlier the state government had also extended the existing textile policy in Gujarat by one year which would have otherwise expired this year in September. Gujarat is an enterprising State on a constant lookout for new opportunities. The state has been a preferred destination for investors because of its strategic location, state-of-the-art infrastructure, robust industry ecosystem, conducive policies and proactive governance. On new industrial estates and parks, Rupani said that the new locations selected for setting up new estates were from the areas which had no industrial base.

Under the policy, garment unit owners would get incentive for generating employment in the form of subsidy in wages. While the subsidy amount would be Rs 3,500 per month for male workers, it would be Rs 4,000 per month for female workers.