NEW DELHI — In a fillip to India’s fashion industry, the government has set a zero excise duty on exports of cotton, spun yarn and apparel. The move went into effect March 1.
Industry analysts said the decision could mean the price of ready-made garments could come down by as much as 7 to 8 percent, benefitting manufacturers, retailers and customers. The announcement was made as a part of the Union Budget for 2013-14 by finance minister P. Chidambaram, with other incentives to keep the textile industry growing.
The apparel industry, which has been suffering from a slowdown, had been lobbying for the removal of the excise tax. Designers and various industry people have been protesting the tax since 2010.
“The withdrawal of the excise tax on branded apparel is a recognition by the government of India that the multiplier effects of jobs created in the textile and apparel industry far outweigh the benefits gained from taxing this industry,” William Bissell, managing director of FabIndia, told WWD. FabIndia is one of the leading retail chains in India that employs textile workers and artisans across the country.
Designer Tarun Tahiliani said the abolition of the tax would give designers much-needed relief from additional bureaucracy. “The system is hugely chaotic, so there is a huge hidden cost to keeping these things off your back,” he said, adding that it was “a very good thing that this excise tax has been abolished. It was abolished a few years ago, then it came back and sometimes the procedure itself was more damaging than the amount of the tax.”
Designer Nikasha Tawadey said that the removal of excise duty “was very welcome, but it was a sign that the community needed to keep together on important issues. If you don’t have a strong enough voice they will keep squeezing you. Designers often wear many hats at the same time, unlike the European counterparts, we often have a lack of major funding and work as accountant, production manager and designer at the same time. We do have our share of woes, and could do with some government help,” she said.
Asked if the benefit of the tax removal would be passed along to the consumer, Tahiliani and several retailers said that with the spring pricing already done and at the stores, the matter would have to be taken under consideration before a decision could be taken, but was more likely to be reflected in prices later in summer.
@tradesy is turning the concept of a showroom upside down with its new space in Santa Monica. Here, the company plans to hold events, art exhibits and a showcase rare fashion pieces like this Louis Vuitton boxing set. Get all the details on Tradesy’s first showroom on WWD.com. #wwdnews
Spotted last night at the @erdem x @hm launch event: Kate Bosworth, Rashida Jones, Kirsten Dunst and Selma Blair. The party, which took place in LA, also marked the opening of their pop-up shop. “I was interested in creating a collection that wasn’t in any way disposable. It was about pieces you’d create and keep forever, things that have a permanence to it,” designer Erdem Moralioglu said. #wwdeye (📷: Katie Jones)
Renee Zellweger in yellow in 2001 and again in 2017. Chosen as one of the 12 @pantone Leading Spring Colors (and dubbed “Meadowlark”), it only makes sense that the bright hue stands the test of time and is making a resurgence this season, seen already on stars like @blakelively and @gigihadid. (📷: Donato Sardello & @rexfeatures) #wwdfashion #tbt
Dior’s 70th anniversary celebration continues with a new exhibition at the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto. “Christian Dior,” which is scheduled to run through March 18, takes a look at the founders tenure from 1947 to 1057 and feature 40 designs. Pictured here is an evening gown from the Ailée, fall 1948-49 haute couture collection. #wwdfashion (📷: Brian Boyle)
As one of the most recognizable models in the world, Christy Turlington Burns has an insider’s view of the fashion industry and the allegations of sexual harassment swirling around it. “I can say that harassment and mistreatment have always been widely known and tolerated in the industry. The industry is surrounded by predators who thrive on the constant rejection and loneliness so many of us have experiences at some point in our careers,” Turlington told WWD, along with her suggestions for how the modeling world should protect younger women and men. Read more on WWD.com. Link in bio. (📷: Tony Palmieri) #wwdnews
@asics America has tapped a new brand ambassador: famed DJ/record producer @steveaoki. This initiative is intended to set the tone for the new brand identity and philosophy and will include partnerships with influencers and in-store and off-line activations that will continue into next year. This is Asics’ most significant marketing effort in two decades, and is expected to attract younger consumers to the brand. #wwdfashion
24-year-old Jean Prounis is redefining the rules of jewelry. Formerly a studio assistant to Jemima Kirke and a design apprentice at Ghuran, she focuses on handcrafted subtleties and ancient goldsmithing techniques. “There was a really sterile feel in the environment and I wanted to have jewelry with character that shapes how you wear it everyday,” Prounis said. Each piece is hand made in New York, either by Prounis or three other jewelers in the district. #wwdfashion
“These collections continue to build on that vision, empowering differently abled adults to express themselves through fashion,” said @tommyhilfiger of his line of adaptive apparel, which launches today. The line consists of 37 men’s and 34 women’s styles based upon the pieces from the spring Tommy Hilfiger sportswear collection. #wwdnews