Fearing layoffs, AEPC surveys apparel units

April 9th, 2008 - 6:33 pm ICT by admin  

Ahmedabad, April 9 (IANS) Fearing layoffs and closures as exports decline with the hardening rupee, a worried Apparel Export Promotion Council (AEPC) is surveying the current status of India’s garment industry. The survey will, in particular, collect information on the current level of capacity utilisation and order books position of the units.

In a circular to all AEPC members, council chairman Rakesh Vaidh stressed the need to inform the government about the “distressed conditions” in the industry and their impact on its employment generation potential.

Vaidh said: “Apparel exports have witnessed significant decline in 2007-08 after five years of consistent growth. Due to the problem of rupee appreciation (against the US dollar) during the year, rupee realisations have declined affecting viability of apparel units. In many cases, this has led to closure of units, especially smaller units.”

The questionnaire accompanying the circular asks the members to provide information on production volumes in 2006-07, 2007-08, the top five customers they have lost and whether they have put on hold their capital expenditure plans.

The members have also been asked to provide information on countries which their existing customers have turned to for securing supplies.

According to AEPC sources, apparel exports target this year of $12.5 billion will be short by about $3 billion.

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