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Textile Ministry pro FDI in multibrand retail restricting to Indian apparel only

YarnsandFibers News Bureau 2014-09-08 15:30:00 – New Delhi

At present, foreign direct investment policy does not allow any FDI in Indian brands or retail but only in foreign brand/retail, which is owned and operated by an international company.

The ministry of textiles under the newly formed BJP government has a contrarian view on the allowing foreign direct investment (FDI) in multi brand retail. In its strategy report for the sector has recommended FDI in single and multi brand retail under automatic route, even though restricting its views only to Indian apparel brands.

On the other hand, the ministry is of the view that building brands and expanding retail footprint is capital intensive yet promotion of Indian brands in the domestic market needs to be supported with success in dedicated retail stores for single and multiple Indian brands.

The Turkish model for helping country’s brands to venture overseas is a good template, which can be adopted with suitable adjustments and modifications on a pilot basis to begin with.

Today markets are either European or American size which does not fit body size of typical Indian person. Providing right size and fit to the market will promote domestic demand and sector growth, suggested the officials.

The ministry has come up with a proposal to conduct a scientific, systematic anthropometric study of Indian population for developing a standard Indian sizing system. Anthropometry refers to the measurement of the human individual and plays an important role in industrial design, clothing design, ergonomics and architecture where statistical data about the distribution of body dimensions in the population are used to optimize products.

Meanwhile, the textile sector need to diversify its export markets and goods category as there are several finished goods categories such as suits, women’s western wear, intimate wear, swimwear, outerwear, etc which has multibillion dollar trade globally but India’s share in them is quite nominal.

Besides, there are several large markets like Japan, Russia, South Korea, Switzerland, etc. in which India’s trade share is very low.

To increase India’s share, country’s specific export strategies need to be developed and implemented. Under this strategy, initially four to five major markets should be identified in which share of Indian exports can be increased.

But to achieve the set target for each market, professional agencies need to be hired to advice on the market specific strategy. While this may appear to be expensive, there is no real alternative for success of the kind envisaged according to the report.

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