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Maran to smoothen duty refund process

Textile Minister Dayanidhi Maran has said the government would smoothen the process of refund of duties affecting the viability of exports in the textile sector, reports Samiran Saha.

business Updated: Aug 23, 2009 21:08 IST
Samiran Saha

Textile Minister Dayanidhi Maran has said the government would smoothen the process of refund of duties affecting the viability of exports in the textile sector.

Textile exports suffered a major setback due to the global economic slowdown that led to a fall in demand from major markets like the United States and the European Union.

“Duty drawback rates and anomalies in refund of duties affecting the viability of export will be addressed in the foreign trade policy to be announced next week,” Maran said at the Platinum Jubilee celebration of Southern India Mills Association in Coimbatore.

Under the duty drawback scheme, exporters face procedural difficulties that take a long time in refund of duty on import of goods. Exporters have been asking for restoration of duty drawback rates that prevailed before September 2008.

On being asked if the effect of the slowdown had been contained, the minister said “there are signs of recovery and the slide in the textile sector has been contained to a large extent.

“We see some signs of recovery in the US, but in Europe recovery may take a little longer than anticipated. Now all hopes are pined on Christmas export orders. In addition to the US and Europe we will focus on the East,” the minister said.

To control the increase in raw material prices, the ministry has asked the Cotton Corporation of India to set up sale depots at Coimbatore and Madurai, Tamil Nadu.

This measure will enable the textiles mills to reduce the yarn cost by approximately Rs 2 per kg, as mills would not have to ship cotton bales from cotton producing states, he said.

Regarding the sale of idle assets and mill land, Maran said: “I do not want to harp on the past, however, in future National Textile Corporation will not be sold below market price.”

“Right now the market is developing and NTC is cash-starved and they need a lot of money and the Mumbai real estate market is booming. I am sure the price was set up when the market was really low. And now the market has picked up, then why we should not sell it at a higher rate,” he said.