Though the gradual shift from manual to automation, as part of technological upgradation, in last decade has resulted in increased efficiency and production, thousands of woollen and other winter garment manufacturing units in Ludhiana are running into huge losses. They have reduced their production.
According to the owners of several woollen garment manufacturers, although their production capacity has increased over the years, the stocks piling up with the passage of every year have forced them to cut on their production volumes as cheap import from the countries like China, Indonesia, Vietnam, Morocco and Bangladesh has been making its way into the local market. This has hit the business of the local manufactures.
It is pertinent to mention here that on concessional grounds, import from Bangladesh is duty-free but illegal import from other countries is entering the Indian market in large volume.
Sudarshan Jain, president, Knitwear Apparel and Manufacturers Association (KAMAL), said, “The last two years have been really depressing for thousands of manufacturing units here so most of them have decreased their production this year. In a scenario where cheap import in bulk has been making its way through legal as well as illegal channels into the local market, we are left with no option other than to exercise a balancing act by manufacturing less than our actual capacity.”
Jain said that the winters have dawned late but manufacturers here heaved a sigh of relief and they shall manage to clear their stocks at the end of the season. However, the larger concern remains unaddressed, he said.
The production of manufacturing units has been curtailed by 30 per cent in the recent years which has taken a heavy bearing on the profit margins of more than 10,000 woollen and winter wear manufacturing units here.
Vinod Thapar, chairman, Knitwear Club, Ludhiana, said, “Until last week, we all were worried as to how the season would fair this time, but since the winter is getting chillier, people as well as retailers have started buying winter wears and all pending stocks of previous year are most likely to be cleared.”
“Earlier a few units had slowed down their production while some of them had stalled for the season but things seem to be improving now,”Thapar added.