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Government working on work spaces for apparel sector

NEW DELHI: The government is working on a modality to facilitate creation of more work spaces in sub-urban areas to increase manufacturing in garment sector, besides a score of other measures to boost textiles industry.

The proposal was a part of the roadmap laid down at a high-level meeting chaired by Prime Minister 
Manmohan Singh last week to discuss measures to boost themanufacturing sector.

"To boost manufacturing, some of the key elements that were approved include creation of enough work spaces in the 
garment sector so that supply is slightly in excess of demand,"National Manufacturing Competitiveness Council (NMCC) Member Secretary Ajay Shankar said at a CII function.

For this, accommodation for workers would be created because these work centres would be set up in suburban areas, or industrial centres, he said, adding that workers employed in these units would also be properly trained to produce good quality items matching the global standards.

The goal of the strategy is to 
leverage the strengths of sector to enhance employment generation and achieve a greater share in global markets, especially in apparel.

"Besides, 
stress would be given on improving processing and modernisation of the weaving segment to really make sure that we succeed with a big-bang," Shankar said.

The core of the strategy was to facilitate the rapid scaling of competitiveness of the garment segment of the textile sector through a comprehensive package of measures.

Shankar said the Prime Minister has given clear time- lines as to when what should happen. "So we will be working on implementation now and keeping him informed about the progress," he said.

At the high-level meeting, a road-map of measures was laid out to increase textile exports by 30 per cent in the current fiscal year, amid a declining rupee.

India's apparel exports declined by over 5 per cent to $12.9 billion in 2012-13 due to sluggish demand in western markets.

The US and Europe, which together account for over 65 per cent of the country's apparel exports, have been facing weak economic growth.

Talking about Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs), he said, "Japanese small units have achieved great success and Indian MSMEs can also adopt their model."

The NMCC has been set up by the government to provide a 
forum for policy dialogue to energise and sustain the growth of manufacturing industries in India.