PROMOTIONAL PLAN FOR BOOSTING EXPORTS OF SPORTS GOODS ON ANVIL: OMAR ABDULLAH
Date : 19 Dec 2000
Location : New Delhi
Shri Omar Abdullah, Minister of State for Commerce & Industry, has said that his Ministry, in association with the Sports Goods Export Promotion Council (SGEPC), is working out an aggressive promotional plan for boosting exports in the sports goods sector with the objective of enabling the industry to realise its full potential. Speaking at the Seminar on "Business Opportunities in Exports of Sports Goods" here today, Shri Abdullah pointed out that there was clear need for the industry to diversify its existing product range and go in for production of non-traditional items like ice-hockey accessories, hi-tech physical equipment, golf equipment and equipment for hunting, fishing, countering etc. "We also need to look at new markets and make concerted efforts to penetrate these markets", the Minister said. The Seminar was organised by the SGEPC in association with the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII).
Emphasising that infusion of fresh capital as well as upgradation of technology being used by the industry was required, Shri Abdullah said that perhaps forging joint ventures with manufacturers of developed countries was the answer to problem. It was clear, he said, that the industry was yet to come to terms with the changing market requirements and the concomitant changes in technology and products. Product development as well as market development were complementary to each other and as the industry explored new markets, it would realise the need for new products, he said.
Stating that the global market for sports goods and fitness equipment was expected to double over the next five years, the Minister said that India with its natural advantages in industries like leather, plastic, rubber, engineering, forging as well as sports goods could easily emerge as a major producer of sports goods in the coming times. Lauding the Council for the efforts it has been making to promote the sports goods sector, the Minister pointed out that there was an urgent need for greater participation of industry in the development of the sector. Assuring support of his Department for securing greater market access by leading trade delegations, participating in international fairs and conducting buyer-seller meets, the Minister informed that the Council on its part had identified a few thrust markets and thrust products to boost exports of sports goods.
The Minister said that he was aware of the problems being faced by the exporters of sports goods and said that he was particularly concerned about the smooth availability of the raw material to the sector from within as well as outside the country. The Minister also pointed out that there was need to change the import duty structure so that the import of raw materials became cheaper. Some of the duty concessions extended to industries like leather and textiles also needed to be extended to the sports goods industry, he said.