Chairman's word - December 2016
Greetings to my friends everywhere and I certainly hope that you enjoy this Christmas and holiday season with friends and family. And with 2017 just a few days away, I think we have good reason to express warm wishes for the New Year.
It has been a turbulent month with demonetization of the Indian economy and the results of US elections opening possibilities of a new global economic and political order. The silver lining in the new developments in USA is that the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade deal may be abandoned and India can look forward to an Indo-US FTA.
AEPC had put forth the feedback of the Apparel industry on impacts of demonetization- low labour turnout, production slowdown and problems in raw material procurement- to the Ministry of Commerce. We have been assured that the problems will ease out shortly. However, I request all of you to encourage our workers to initiate bank accounts and accept wages electronically, as per the guidance of the Honorable Prime Minister. As an important partner in nation’s growth, we need to participate in making the value chain as cashless as possible. In this direction, AEPC has initiated awareness program on the Unique Payment Interface (UPI) scheme with the aim to ensure all its employees and associates use this payment option. You are requested to also encourage your suppliers to use UPI platform for transactions.
I am happy to share that the various ‘Awareness generation and Capacity building’ initiatives by AEPC are being well received. The latest in the series were the WGSN fashion forecast seminars. AEPC plans to continue with this drive in all apparel clusters, including domestic clusters, with an aim to enhance production and employment in the apparel industry.
You will be pleased to know that we had a very positive meeting with a trade representative’s delegation from Sweden recently. I look forward to sharing some very positive news with you all in this direction very soon.
The AEPC Export Award ceremony will be held on 19th Dec 2016. We are grateful to Smt. Smriti Zubin Irani, Honorable Union Minister of Textiles, GOI, for having consented to be the Chief Guest. We are proud to recognize and encourage excellence in our domain, with the hope to inspire future generations.
I also take this opportunity to invite all of you to the 58th India International Garment Fair 2017( AW 2017-18), which is to take place from 18 to 20 January 2017 in Pragati Maidan, New Delhi.The IIGF has an unrivaled reputation as a global platform for showcasing Apparel manufacturing and business expertise of India to Buyers from all over the world. This edition will be no different and holds the promise of being a landmark event for the Indian Apparel Industry.
Once again, wish you all a Merry Christmas and a very Happy new year!
Ashok G Rajani