New Delhi, Friday, 27th March 2020: Confederation of Indian Textile Industry’s (CITI) Chairman, Shri T. Rajkumar thanked and appreciated the Central Government and State Governments for the efforts undertaken under the dynamic leadership of the Hon’ble Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi Ji, to contain and minimize the effects of unprecedented outbreak of deadly Coronavirus (COVID-19). He further stated that the Hon’ble Prime Minister’s decision to impose lockdown on the whole nation till 14th April 2020 is bold and proactive to safeguard the lives of 130 crore citizens of India and assured full support and cooperation from the textile and clothing industry.

CITI Chairman thanked the Hon’ble Union Minister of Textiles, Smt. Smriti Zubin Irani, for standing with the textile and clothing industry in this tough situation and hoped that the International buyers will respond positively to her appeal of “Commerce with Compassion” by not cancelling even a single order which are already placed with the Indian Textile & Apparel manufacturers amid the CoVid-19 outbreak.

Shri Rajkumar thanked the Hon’ble Union Minister of Finance, Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman for announcing Rs 1.70 Lakh Crore relief package under Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana for the poorer sections of the society to help them fight the battle against Corona Virus. He also appreciated the decision of extending Rs.50 lakh medical insurance to the each health staff who are risking their own lives to safeguard the lives of those who are suffering from this deadly virus.

CITI Chairman appreciated the Hon’ble Union Minister of Commerce & Industry, Shri Piyush Goyal, for setting up a Control Room in DPIIT to monitor the issues of internal trade, manufacturing, delivery and logistics of essential commodities during the lockdown period and for assuring that the Ministry of Commerce & Industry is working 24X7 for extending all kind of possible help to the exporters at this juncture.

Shri Rajkumar thanked the RBI Governor, Shri Shaktikanta Das, for addressing the industry’s immediate concerns of liquidity by taking a number of commendable steps. Three months moratorium extended for the term loans and working capital interest and also exempting the moratorium period for asset re-classification and credit rating would help the industry, said Mr Rajkumar.  He hailed the steps of recalculating the drawing power to avail additional working capital and substantially reducing the Repo rates and thereby reduce the bank interest rate.

CITI Chairman stated that though three months moratorium had been extended for term loans and working capital interest, an immediate clarification from RBI was essential to extend moratorium for term loan interest payment as the financial year ending is fast approaching. He opined that textile industry being power intensive, at least 25% working capital without any collateral or margin money would be required for the T&C industry to make salaries and wages to the employees and meet other standing charges.  Mr Rajkumar also hoped that the Government would closely monitor the gravity of the problems and take appropriate steps to tide over the crisis by taking suitable policy measures.

Mr Rajkumar appealed to the Hon’ble Chief Ministers and Power Ministers of all the State Governments to extend the relief measures by deferring the current consumption charges for three months and waive off the demand charges for the lock-down period in line with the steps already initiated by few State Governments.  He said that power cost accounts around 40% of the conversion cost for the textile mills and therefore, power bill payment deferral would be an essential relief measure by the State Government in the wake of COVID-19 and lockdown action across the country.