With an aim to step up manufacturing and generate more employment the union government is toying with the idea of hiking import duty on nearly 300 textile products according to sources close to the ministry.
The source indicated that the government may also consider relaxing foreign direct investment (FDI) norms. Fabrics, garments and man-made fibers are some of the products which are expected to register import duty increase. The quantum of increase on duties is slated to be steep and is expected to ris from the current 5-10 percent to 20 percent.
The Finance Ministry is expected to come out with a notification in a short while pertaining to import duty increase, informed source. The notification would have to be tabled in parliament in the event the government decides to come out with the decision within a week’s time.
Domestic manufacturers would receive much needed relief from the proposed increase in duties as most of these imported goods are much cheaper than the domestically produced varieties. This in turn would boost manufacturing activity and engender job creation in the textile sector. Currently the textile sector employs around 105 million people. Earlier, in the month of July, the union government had doubled import duty on more than 50 textile products. These included jackets, suits and carpets. They attracted a new duty fare of 20 percent. The move was aimed at promoting domestic manufacturing.