The seventy five years old and the single largest employers’ organisation representing the organised textile industry in South India, The Southern India Mills’ Association (SIMA) having its Head Quarters at Coimbatore opened its Regional Office on 21st January 2009 at Salem, one of the major textile clusters in the State. Inaugurating the SIMA Regional Office at 1/93 Chinneya Bhavanum, Thangavel Nagar, Azhagapuram, Salem 636 016, Mr.S.Dinakaran, Vice Chairman of the Association addressed the Press and Media.Mr Dinakaran stated that it had become essential for the Association to reach-out the mills in the major textile clusters and assist the mills to face the challenges and grab opportunities in the globalised scenario and ensure their competitiveness.
He further said that the Regional Office would cater to the needs of over 350 textile mills in Salem, Erode, Nammakkal, Dharmapuri, Cuddalore, Kancheepuram, Krishnagiri, Trichy, Thanjavur and Vellore Districts. Mr Dinakaran informed that the Regional Office would also liaise with various government departments like Labour Department, Pollution Control, State Electricity Board, PF/ESI, Inspector of Factories, Central Excise and Service Tax, Commercial Taxes, etc., and also address the local issues of the textile industries situated in these regions. He added that the Regional Office would conduct human resource development programmes at its office and also at the individual units to constantly upgrade the skills of the human resources and also the entrepreneurial skills of the top management.
SIMA Vice Chairman further said that the regional office would provide technical and management consultancy services to the textile industry in Salem Region and also would convene periodical meetings of the CEOs to prepare the strategic plans to tackle various issues.Mr Dinakaran informed that the Indian textile industry had been undergoing an unprecedented crisis from the beginning of the year 2007, initially due to sudden appreciation of rupee against US dollar latter gradual global melt down, hardening of bank interest rates, high cotton price, steep increase in the minimum support prices for cotton, huge back log in TUF subsidy and various other dues from the government, steep reduction in the export incentives etc., and the textile mills in the Tamil Nadu were the worst hit due to over 60% power shortage.
SIMA Vice Chairman pointed out that the stimulus packages announced by the Government were not adequate and added that the vital demands of the textile industry such as two year moratorium for repayment of loans, a special package for working capital consisting of 7% interest rate for purchase of cotton, reduction of working capital margin money to 10% and extending the credits for 9 months, mandate CCI to sell cotton at five cents less than the international cotton prices, exempting the fuels meant for power generation from all taxes and levies,etc., were totally ignored. He added that the Government of Tamil Nadu had not also taken any positive step to tide over the power crisis in the State.