The coir sector has fetched an export revenue of â‚¹1,630 crore in the last fiscal against â‚¹1,476 crore achieved in the previous year despite recessionary trends in the overseas markets, it has not deterred coir exports from the country, as the sector continues to register a better performance in the last few consecutive years.
CP Radhakrishnan, the newly-appointed Chairman of the Coir Board said that it is expecting exports in the current fiscal to exceed the last yearâ€™s levels as it already crossed â‚¹1,382 crore as on January.
Coir exports during April-January period of current fiscal were up 5.5 percent at â‚¹ 1,382 crore against corresponding last yearâ€™s â‚¹ 1,310 crore.
With this growth momentum and improvement shown in the export front, the Board is looking at doubling the export revenue in three years by penetrating into new overseas markets.
Currently, China, Korea, Japan, Germany, Canada, US are the major markets for coir products and the Board is looking at exploring Australian market in a big way with value-added products, he said.
Based on the feedback received from exporters, Radhakrishnan also emphasized the need to modernize the industry to enhance the productivity as well as in ensuring uniformity of coir rolls in the export market.
Talks are on with leading spinning machinery manufacturers in India to develop new spindles to improve the productivity.
He further clarified that there is no scarcity or non-availability of raw material for value-added coir producing units. The current trend of coir fibre exports to China was not showing any substantial increase and this has resulted in sufficient availability in the domestic market. The need is approximately one lakh tonnes and is met without any hassles.
According to him, coir geo-textiles has a huge requirement in roads construction and the Board has already laid 18 km of rural road network in Kerala using the material based on a study carried out by NIT, Kozhikode and College of Engineering, Thiruvananthapuram.
The Board is in talks with NHAI seeking approval of using coir geo-textiles in the construction of national highways, as there would be a 25 percent saving in construction cost, besides increasing the durability of roads for five years. Apart from this, it would give tremendous boost to the coir industry.
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