A day after the goods and services tax (GST) roll-out, concerns regarding its implementation were shared by various industry leaders who took part in conferences and technical sessions at Mahatma Mandir in Gandhinagar, Gujarat, where the 3-day global mega trade show ‘Textiles India 2017’ concluded on Sunday.
At a conference on ‘India as a Global Sourcing Hub & Investment Destination’, convened to discuss challenges in the textile sector, Gautam Nair, chairman of Matrix Clothing, said: “The GST implementation has brought in serious uncertainty, particularly to exporters. Will we be refunded all the embedded taxes, what about those taxes not covered under GST?”
He added: “Whereas a bulk of the world market is in synthetics, India competes in cotton and related segments, while China straddles the whole market place. Labour laws are a huge constraint deterring large-scale corporate investment and the sector gets no duty advantages to EU and Canada unlike our competitors like Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Vietnam and Bangladesh.”
Rakesh Mohan Joshi, faculty at Indian Institute of Foreign Trade, said that GST implementation remained a concern for the industry at large. He said a study titled ‘Challenges & Strategies to Promote India as a Sourcing Destination for Textiles’ found that India’s textile exports have dropped since 2014 and were pegged at $35.4 billion with 4.89 per cent of global market share.
He said that while India has bettered its textile exports, the gap between India and China has widened. Sunil Arora, managing director of Impulse International, also cautioned over industry’s concerns on GST implementation while giving the buyers’ perspective at the session.