INDIA: Surat's mills boosted by Budget 2006

SURAT: Surat cheered most when finance minister P Chidambaram made his budget speech on on February 28.

There are about 6.5 lakh powerlooms in this southern Gujarat city of Surat. This city is one of the largest synthetic textiles manufacturing hub, not just in India, but perhaps in South Asia.

Surat churns out around four crore metres of synthetic fabric per day.

This budget comes as a major booster for Surat's textile industry, which couldn't have asked for more, says an upbeat Southern Gujarat chamber of commerce and industry president Dilip Chasmawala.

And its not difficult to understand why. As the biggest consumer of man made fibre and yarn, Surat stands to gain the most from the excise duty reduction from 16% to 8% and that of import duty from 15% to 10%.

The reduction in raw material prices will also benefit Surat. Already known for its low-cost synthetic fabrics, Surat will now be able to weave cheaper fabrics, thanks to lower costs and improve marketibility, said Arvind Lalbhai, chairman, Arvind Mills. 

Adds Gauttam Shah, co-chairman, textile council, CII (Gujarat): Surat, which had been passing through alean phase, will now see a revival of sorts with many of the small units, that had been winding up, becoming competitive yet again.

The boost to textile-related infrastructure through cluster development, enhancement of Textile Upgradation Fund scheme from Rs 435 crore to Rs 535 crore and antidumping duty on textile fabrics too have been an icing on the cake for Surat.

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Added: March 4, 2006 Source: Agencies
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