To understand the economic impact due to the lockdown in the country caused by Covid-19, Indian Textile Accessories and Manufacturers’ Association (ITAMMA) conducted a survey amongst its members. The results of the survey showed that the textile engineering industry would need a support package from the government to help it survive in the near term, and grow in the future. The textile engineering industry directly employs about 50,000 people and has capital investment in the range of US$ 423.93 million with an installed capacity of US$ 920.54 million. It has more than 1500 units with over 250 units producing complete machinery, 450 units produce spare parts, components and accessories of the machinery and scores of others who are traders, agents, dealers and consultants.
ITAMMA has asked the government for support in the short term (within May 2020), and in the medium term (within December 2020).
Some short term relief measures
- Extend policies / covers to exporters at lower premium rates
- Expand at minimal premium, insurance cover to the entire loss due to the pandemic (as against a 5-10% coverage)
- Waive demurrage and other penal charges
- EPF, ESI contributions of employer and employee from April-June 2020 to be absorbed by the government
- ESI benefits should continue from March-June 2020, while waiving off contributions
- Textile machinery manufacturing being a continuous process should be allowed to operate with in-house workers with prescribed pre-conditions.
- Moratorium on repayment of prinicipal and interest should be extended till December 2020
- Moratorium on interest on working capital should be for a period of 24 months
- Covid-Grant to meet expenses for six months, which can be adjusted against input tax credits arising in FY 21-22
- Speedy refunds of all dues on account of MEIS, RoSCTL and GST by central government
- NPA classification of MSMEs to be put on hold till June 2020
- Electricity boards can reduce payments due for the lockdown period from the deposits and also reduce deposit to be maintained by the same amount
- Government needs to bear the burden of 50% of wages and salaries to the workers for six months
Some measures for the medium term
- Packing credit period for existing loans and export bill realization to be extended by six months
- Losses in forex hedging from March 23 to June 30 to be converted into term loan with six months moratorium and repayments over 24 months
- Covid-Grant to be used for scaling up healthy and safety measures of workers, for reskilling labour and staff, and to be offered to those who face layoffs or salary cuts similar to VRS package.