“Garment exports dipped by 11.4 per cent in 2009-10 to $9.7 billion, from $10.95 billion in the year-ago period. The contraction in March was 6.7 per cent .
“We can say that the optimistic scenario is a 10 per cent growth in apparel export,” Premal Udani, chairman of the Apparel Export Promotion Council (AEPC), the apex body of garment exporters, told reporters here .
“The council, however, said that the government should take more steps to discourage the export of raw material such as cotton and yarn to help the domestic industry…”The government must calibrate exports of raw material,” Udani said, adding that raw material constitutes 55-60 per cent of the industry’s cost. Though the government has taken steps such as withdrawal of export sops on cotton yarn, fabric prices are still on the higher side, he said…Exporters said that due to largescale exports, prices of fabric in the domestic market have increased by about 40 to 50 per cent over the last six months…China imported 4.76 lakh tonnes of raw cotton from India between January and March this year, besides cotton yarn worth $5.5 million. Bangladesh also imported a huge chunk of cotton from India during this period…The apparel industry provides employment to about seven million people, of which half are engaged in the export sector.  .