With continuous depreciation of Zambian currency, textile makers are finding it too costly to import raw materials in Zambia as it would increase the cost of production, said Ajit Desai, managing director of Kariba Textiles.
The blankets are manufactured by using materials like acrylic yarn and fibre, which are not produced in the local market thereby making it costly to manufacture blankets in Zambia, he said.
Desai opined other investors to help in reducing the cost of producing blankets by focusing on yarn manufacturing domestically.
â€œThe materials are imported on credit basis that are quoted in foreign currency. After manufacturing the goods using these imported materials, we sell them in local currency. However, the main challenge is to pay back the raw material cost to the supplier as there is no stability of our currency Kwacha.â€, he stated.
As a result, there has been a negative impact on textile business because prices canâ€™t just be increased suddenly, he added.
Desai has appealed the government to take this matter into consideration and support the local blankets manufacturers in order to save the domestic textile industry.
Economist Dismas Chapula, Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry, said the government is already committed to promote the textile industry as it will create employment in the country.
He further said that product quality is the main factor and the local manufacturers should focus more on quality in order to get their products accepted domestically and globally.
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