India surpasses China to become top exporter of knitwear to US

Posted by Daily Shipping Times on 21-08-2017        Tweet

NEW DELHI : For the first time in the history of India's garment exports to US, the Country has clocked number one position in terms of market share in the category Men/Boys cotton knit shirts for the six months period of 2017. This was attributed to the slowdown in China. However, exporters said they will not be able to retain the slot.

Exporters said that since US market gives them a level-playing field, they were able to compete and grow. But the recent appreciation of the rupee against the dollar could be a major hurdle in the upcoming months.

Data released by Office of Textile and Apparel, US department of commerce, shows India exported 8.5 million dozens of men/boys cotton shirts to US. India's share in total men/boys knitwear shirts import in US stood at 8.7 per cent in June.

After a dip in 2014, India's market share has grown steadily. In 2013, India's market share was 6.4 per cent, it dropped to 6.2 per cent in 2014. Since then, it has steadily increased and in 2016 it stood at 7.8 per cent.

Contrary to that China's market share which was 11 per cent in 2012 dropped to 9.6 per cent in 2016 is now at 8.5 per cent.

In other segments including women/girls cotton knit shirts/ blouses, men/ boys cotton trousers, breeches, shorts, cotton nightwear/ pyjamas, India and others countries have also increased their market share. While China's loss is India's gain, the exporters are unhappy as Vietnam is giving them tough competition. Bangladesh is also increasing its market share.

Everyone is blooming at the cost of China, said an exporter.

The data shows that Vietnam exported 8.47 million dozens of men/boys knitwear to US. The difference with India's exports is just of 29,778 dozens.

Tirupur Exporters Association President Raja M Shanmugam said that the factors which have led to the increase of India's share include exporters investing heavily in capacities to take on more orders from US expecting that they would get more orders, which were traditionally going to China.

China decided to reduce its exports in textile as it found other sectors to be more lucrative.

This opened doors for India, Vietnam, Bangladesh and other developing countries for the global textiles. However, India could not compete with other nations in Europe and other parts since it does not enjoy benefits like Vietnam, Bangladesh, Cambodia and others under trade agreements.