Minister of Textiles Smriti Zubin Irani said that reclassification of MSMEs and 5 percent reduction in tax on annual turnover of companies up to Rs. 250 crore will help manufacturing and increase employability in textiles sector. Briefing media, she said increase in customs duty on silk and manmade fibre will discourage cheap Chinese textile products from flooding the market and benefit domestic manufacturers in the power loom sector.
Of the Rs. 6000 crore special package, which was announced in 2016, for the textiles sector, Rs. 1800 crore have already been released and Rs. 300 crore will be released during the current financial year, the Minister informed. She also spoke about 100 per cent increase in allocation for skill development in Textiles sector. The correction in the GST rates on hand made and machine made garments has created ease of doing business in these sectors, the Minister said.
GST rate has been reduced on yarn from 18 per cent to 12 per cent and GST on job work has been brought down from 18 per cent to 5 per cent Support for merchandise scheme has been enhanced from 2 per cent to 5 per cent for the apparel sector, she said. Irani attributed 16 percent growth in apparel sector to the effective implementation of subsidy schemes. Rs.138 crore has been disbursed to 28000 weavers as Mudra loan and 1.8 lakh garment workers have formally joined Employees Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO).
The Minister further said that the second round of Hastkala Shivirs will be organised in different parts of the country with special focus on North East region from 19th to 24th of this month. She has also written to Members of Parliament to actively participate in these camps in order to encourage weavers. The Textiles Minister along with senior officials of the Ministry will be a part of these camps. In the first round, 394 camps were held in 247 districts across the country from 7th to 17th of October last year.