Apparel manufacturers seek faster clearance of consignments from China

The situation at all airports and ports at Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai, Bangalore, Kolkata, Tuticorin and others is precarious as there is inordinate delay in clearing consignments
The Apparel Export Promotion Council (AEPC) has asked the Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC) to streamline customs clearances on special priority and clear the ongoing issues in clearing shipments originating from China. The development comes at a time when reports claim that customs officials in some cities have been asked not to clear containers originating from China.

AEPC's Chairman A Sakthivel has written to CBIC chairman and requested him to intervene in the matter and expedite the process of clearing the shipments of inputs which are held up at ports and undergoing scrutiny. Sakthivel has sought special priority for manufacturer exporters, who are dependent on this for servicing export orders.

In some cities, containers have been held and parked at container freight stations following an intelligence alert.

Sakthivel said, "The apparel industry is facing a huge crisis due to the coronavirus pandemic. Apparel exports declined by 91.04 per cent in April and 66.19 per cnet in May 2020. After the relaxation of lockdown in India and overseas, business is gearing upto get back to normalcy."

Apparel industry is dependent on several inputs, which are not available domestically or have to be imported in accordance with buyers' requirements. So far, such imports were subject to random and partial checks only.

According to Sakthivel, lately customs authorities at several ports are carrying out a 100 per cent examination of goods originating from China, Hong Kong and Taiwan. This has led to undue delays in clearance of imported shipments of inputs which are meant for manufacture of garments for exports.

"It is affecting factory operations as inputs are held up at ports and exporters fear that they will fail to meet the delivery schedule," said Sakthivel.

The situation at all airports and ports at Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai, Bangalore, Kolkata, Tuticorin and others is precarious as there is inordinate delay in clearing consignments.

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