iconimg Sunday, March 29, 2015

Sachin Sharma, Hindustan Times
Ludhiana, May 14, 2013
Even as the knitwear industry in city is gearing up its preparations in hope of another good season after the one that ended, the manufacturers of summer garments are feeling the pinch of slow market this year.
Though, industry people attribute different factors responsible for the prevailing situation including relatively low temperature and global economic slowdown, but they agree that the market was not as good as it should be for the manufacturers this year.

Accepting a slow business this season till now, Balbir Kumar, managing director of Octave Apparels, said that the market was about 20-25% slow this year compared to the last year. He attributed the weather conditions as factor behind the slow market saying that temperature this year has remained comparatively low.

However, Sanjiv Gupta, managing director of Punjab Apparel Park Limited, said, that economic slowdown and not weather conditions were responsible for the slow market this year.

“Whether it is 38 degrees Celsius or 43 degrees Celsius, people will go for purchasing summer garments in both the temperature conditions. But the market is not witnessing a surge of customers this year. The manufacturers who have a pan-India presence can withstand the situation but the small manufacturers are the worst hit due to slowdown,” Gupta said.

As per the data with the department of agriculture meteorology, Punjab Agriculture University (PAU), the average temperature in city has remained between 37-38 degrees Celsius. While the temperature during this period remained above 40 degrees Celsius last year.

Chairman of Duke Fashions Komal Jain rued of slowdown in business as compared to last year. “Though we cannot fully attribute weather as the factor, other factors such as adverse market condition are also responsible for this situation. But, the apparel industry for the past one and a half month has witnessed a slow down,” Jain said.

With half May already gone, manufacturers feel that they will be left with a small period of 30-40 days even if temperatures starts rising, because in the end of June monsoons usually hit the area thereby decreasing the demand.