Category Archives: Editorials

Is China Clothing the World in Polyester?

Editor-NCMThere is a growing trend of manipulating consumers who buy their clothing articles thinking they are buying genuine cotton clothing made from 100% cotton. But to their horror, their wearing experience turns out to be a nightmare. They soon realize that manufacturers are replacing the cotton in their favorite clothes with unreliable and uncomfortable fabrics and they have been victims of some mystery fabric. It looks and feels like cotton, but only at first. America’s cotton producers and importers have launched “CottonOrNothing” campaign to educate consumers about such malpractices. In view of lack of information on the labels, buyers are unable to know the exact composition of the fabric. In most cases synthetic fibres are mixed with cotton to reduce cost. Polyester is the predominant among them. Continue reading Is China Clothing the World in Polyester?

Vietnam’s Garment & Textile Industry is On Top Of the World

Editor-NCMVietnam is, today, on top of the world thanks to the expectations of the country joining the elite group of TPP beneficiaries of the US duty free imports. Vietnam’s garment and textile sector employs more than 7.7 million people working in 4,000 textile and garment enterprises. Garment and textile exports account for approx. 15% of Vietnam’s GDP and about 18% of total exports. Vietnam exports garment and textile products to more than 180 countries across the world. Vietnamese garment and textile industry’s exports were $24.5 billion. With the TPP, they expect to touch US$30 bn by 2020 out of which, exports to the USA alone could be US$20 bn. Currently, the US accounts for 49 percent of the total exports. The industry uses about 6.8 billion metres of fabric each year out of which only 800 million metres are locally produces and 6 billion metres have to be imported. Chinese textile and apparel firms are now building factories in Vietnam in hopes of taking advantage of the TPP’s planned phase-out of U.S. tariffs on apparel imported from Vietnam. Continue reading Vietnam’s Garment & Textile Industry is On Top Of the World

Does India Need A New Textile Policy Or A Plan Plus Effective Action?

Editor-NCMThanks to PM Narendra Modi’s ‘Make In India’ call (‘Tiger’s Call’, if you so like), there has been a flood of seminars, conferences, workshops and what not, throughout the country and overseas. At a similar Seminar on ‘Strategy for Making India a Global Leader in Textiles and Apparels’ last month, textile minister Santosh Kumar Gangwar hinted at government’s intentions to come out with a ‘new long term’ Textile Policy to make India globally competitive. The reasons provided by the minister were same as those applicable for any other industry sector in the country such as : skill upgradation, rationalization of labour cost, speeding up customs clearance and reduction in the cost of capital.

Now let’s have a look at the way our existing policies work. Continue reading Does India Need A New Textile Policy Or A Plan Plus Effective Action?

Textile Industry finds the Union Budget (2015-16) Disappointing

Editor-NCMThe Union Budget (2015-16) was presented by FM Arun Jaitley on 28 February at a time when expectations were unrealistically high from all sections: corporates, small businesses, industry as well as common men. As usual, the Budget got mixed and cautious reactions so as not to offend those who ignored industry’s demands.

CITI Chairman Prem Malik expressed his deep disappointment : “forget fresh investments under the TUFS during 2015-16 because there is no balance available for fresh investments under the scheme as of now due to the reduction in allocation to Rs. 1520 cr from last year’s Rs. 1864 cr.” CITI’s other complaints include increase in service tax to 14% and the hike in effective rate of excise duty on MMF from 12.36 to 12.5%. This hike is effected in spite of a unanimous request from all the segments of the industry to reduce it from 12.36% to 6%. CITI feels that some measures in the budget may help in the long run but there is no textile specific proposal in it. Continue reading Textile Industry finds the Union Budget (2015-16) Disappointing

‘Moving Production’ to ‘Improving Production’ Can Cure Low Labor Cost Mania

Editor-NCMA US apparel manufacturer, in his recent post on, has revealed that fashion companies generally fix their MSRP (Market Suggested Retail Price) at least 400% of the manufacturing cost. Giving an example, he says that if a manufacturer makes the T-shirt for $5, he sells to a Retail chain for $10. The retailer, in turn, sells this T-shirt to the consumer at $20. According to him, brick and mortar retailers generally charge at least a 100% margin on their products to cover the cost of the T-shirt, rent, employees and overhead. Hence, the consumer has to pay $20 for a T-shirt that costs $5 to make. Since I was reading a post on Forbes, I was curious to know the manufacturing cost of T-shirts of certain premium brands that retail at as high as $100! What factors are considered while fixing their MSRP? I was greatly disappointed since I didn’t find any information on this aspect. Continue reading ‘Moving Production’ to ‘Improving Production’ Can Cure Low Labor Cost Mania

Transformation of Algae into Fibers

Editor-NCMThe transformation of algae into fibers is being regarded as one of the top 100 innovations that are expected to play a significant role in shaping the future economy. Natural fibers are popular and their demand is overall on the rise because of their look and feel but the performance of synthetics is forcing producers to emulate the comfort of natural fibers, and also to develop natural fibers with the easy-care properties of synthetics. The demand for synthetic and cellulosic man-made fibers is expected to remain high in the coming years. But the growth potential for cotton will be limited due to an intensifying competition for the farmland availability vis-a-vis the food production. In a comparison of areas needed to produce 1 tonne of fibres, 67 ha are required for wool production against only 0.8 ha for viscose fibres – whilst no agricultural area at all is needed for the production of synthetic fibres. A stronger use of natural fibres also leads to rising global food prices – because agricultural areas are more and more put to different uses in order to produce raw materials for industry. Man-made fibres ease the strain on agricultural areas and thus make contributions to sustainability without aggravating the food situation. It is estimated that only 0.8% of currently produced volumes of petroleum products are needed for the global production of synthetic man-made fibres. Continue reading Transformation of Algae into Fibers

Robotic logistics is the only way forward

Editor-NCMThere is a growing realization among supply chain professionals that no matter how hard present-day logistics’ systems work, they will never catch up with the growth of the overall economy. Thanks to an exponential increase in the no. of internet users (3 billion estimated) resulting in millions of on line transactions taking place every second, a big change is seen coming lightning fast to supply chains. The good news is that the churn of supply chains has already begun in response to this change. Researchers, retailers and consultants are nearly unanimous in their opinion that the traditional supply chains cannot keep pace with the e-commerce growth taking place in a increasingly automation-dependent world where speed and instant inventory availability are going to be the key deciding factors of success for businesses. Continue reading Robotic logistics is the only way forward

Future of Textile Industry is Vibrant (& Migrant, as well)

Editor-NCMThe ITMF Mission Statement reads: “The International Textile Manufacturers Federation (ITMF) is an international forum for the world’s textile industries, dedicated to keeping the world-wide membership constantly informed through surveys, studies and publications, participating in the evolution of the industry’s value chain and through the organization of annual conferences as well as publishing considered opinions on future trends and international developments.”

Founded in 1904, ITMF represents the broadest possible segment of the world’s textile industries. The Indian industry is represented by the Confederation of Indian Textile Industry (CITI) and the Cotton Textiles Export Promotion Council (Texprocil) plus about 12 individual corporate members. ITMF’s annual conferences provide a wealth of data on the global textile and allied industry, and also act as window to the future trends and developments. The Federation has several committees that undertake various global level studies that cover production costs, raw materials scenario and actual machinery shipment data. Continue reading Future of Textile Industry is Vibrant (& Migrant, as well)

Abused Workers Make ‘Flawed Fabrics’  : Garment Makers of South India Under Global Watch

Editor-NCMThere is disturbing news for textile manufacturers of the country that must put them on a high alert, especially if they are engaged in export related production activity and not following the global practices with regard to well-being of their labourforce.

The Netherlands based Centre for Research on Multinational Corporations (SOMO) – in association with India Committee of the Netherlands (ICN) – has come out with its latest investigative report on the Tamil Nadu textile and garment industry. The research was conducted to find out the current status of compliance of labour-related global standards by leading export oriented manufacturing units. Continue reading Abused Workers Make ‘Flawed Fabrics’  : Garment Makers of South India Under Global Watch