COIMBATORE: Major textile bodies in the region on Wednesday welcomed the Union Budget by terming it as one aiming at strong and stable economic growth. President of Tirupur Exporters Association (TEA) K M Subramanian said the budget mentions the seven priorities "Saptarishi" that would trigger the economic growth.

In a statement, he said the priority for infrastructure development would reduce logistics cost. He said he appreciates the focus given to green growth. While welcoming the increased allocation of Rs 900 crore for ATUF (amended technology upgradation fund) scheme for 2023-24 as against Rs 600 crore last year, Subramanian said he was hopeful that the increased allocation would help to clear the ATUF pending claims.

However, there was no announcement on continuance of ATUF scheme in this budget and he was hopeful that government would announce it in the near future, he said.

The focus on enhancing the yield of extra-long staple (ELS) cotton would help increase the manufacturing of value-added garments and also to reduce import of ELS cotton.

He welcomed the extension of the credit guarantee scheme for MSMEs with an infusion of Rs 9,000 crore, collateral for Rs 2 lakh crore loans to MSMEs, effective from April 1, 2023. In a statement, chairman of Southern India Mills Association Ravi Sam appreciated the thrust on inclusive growth and skill development that would help the labour- and capital- intensive textile industry.

He thanked the government for considering the proposal submitted by SIMA and announcing a scheme for increasing the production of extra-long staple cotton. SIMA can match international ELS cotton varieties and would take initiatives to increase the production, he said. After introduction of BT technology only for long staple cotton, the industry started facing shortage of ELS cotton, he said.

The industry requirement of ELS cotton is around 20 lakh bales while the country produces only 5 lakh bales and heavily depends on imports of superior quality ELS cotton, he said adding that this is an initiative towards the Aatmanirbar Bharat benefit for the whole textile value chain, including the cotton farmers.

While welcoming the budget, chairman of Confederaton of Indian Textile Industry T Rajkumar said the setting up of an agriculture accelerator fund to encourage farm startups by young entrepreneurs in rural areas. The fund would help bring in innovative and affordable solutions, modern technologies to transform agricultural practice, and increase productivity, he said. The textile sector looks forward to attain skilled workforce and quick production of smart textiles, he said.

Published On : 01-02-2023

Source : The Times of India

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