Steep hike in yarn prices: Tirupur garment industry in crisis

It may be noted that the prices of all varieties of Yarn were moving around Rs 220-290 per kg during 2021 but after the yarn mill owners increased prices, the commodity touched more than Rs 400 per kilogram.
Representative Image
Representative Image Reuters

CHENNAI: With the steep hike in yarn prices continuing the garment industries in Tirupur are in crisis.

Several units are not functioning for the past several months with most of them getting outsourced orders from major garment exporters.

Exporters of Tirupur, which is considered the knitwear hub of India, are in a tough situation as they are unable to execute international orders that they have taken. This, according to exporters, would lead to the market going elsewhere.

It may be noted that Bangladesh and Vietnam are two major contenders for European and United States markets along with India and Sri Lanka. While the economic crisis in Sri Lanka has already taken its toll on that country, with the industry slumping, the spiraling yarn prices have led to a grinding halt for several units in Tirupur.

It may be noted that the prices of all varieties of Yarn were moving around Rs 220-290 per kg during 2021 but after the yarn mill owners increased prices, the commodity touched more than Rs 400 per kilogram.

The exporters are not able to negotiate prices with the buyers and hence there is a decline in the orders as high yarn prices take the industry to losses.

An exporter who does not want to be named, while speaking to IANS said: "High yarn prices are making it difficult for us to negotiate orders. In August 2021, the prices of one kilogram of yarn were 220, but now the prices in April -May have touched around Rs 440 per kg."

He said that the industry cannot survive at the price of yarn as there would be huge losses to the exporters and hence most of the companies are either shut or operating with a minuscule workforce.

The exporter said that as they could not employ, a large number of workers from North Indian states and from North Eastern states have left Tirupur for good. Several local workers from the districts of Pudukottai, Dindigul, Madurai, and Tiruvannamalai have also left for their home districts as there are no jobs in Tirupur.

Ravisekhar. K, a worker from Pudukottai in Tamil Nadu while speaking to IANS said: "I was living at Tirupur with my friends and now almost all of us are leaving the garment city. There is no work and we were earning around 23000 Rs per month. I don't know what I am going to do in my village other than farming. However, farming will not yield much money, and my family consisting of a father, mother, wife, and two children will have to starve. It's a very sad state of affairs."

Notably, there are around 1.30 lakh migrant workers in the various garment factories of Tirupur and if the crisis continues, it will affect a large number of families who are dependent on this industry.

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