sri lanka: Textile trade with Sri Lanka, though small, on hold | Surah News

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Surat: The city’s textile traders with business in Sri Lanka are closely monitoring the situation in the neighboring island nation where socio-economic conditions have become unstable due to public unrest. However, even though the total trade in textile products to Sri Lanka is low, businessmen have stopped taking new orders.
Another blow to Sri Lankan importers is the devaluation of the local rupee. The Sri Lankan rupee which was worth 190 rupees a few weeks ago for one dollar is now above 315 rupees. This put Sri Lankan importers in deep trouble and Indian exporters put a halt to future trade.
“There are no textile companies in Surat doing business with Sri Lanka at present. It had come to a complete halt for almost two years during Covid and as markets reopen the situation is preventing textile companies in Surat from reaching their customers there,” said Kanti Mehta, a salesperson.
It should be noted that the city’s trade with southern Indian states was already impacted on some key commodities like zari due to the sharp rise in silk prices. Many South Indian units discontinued the production of silk sarees in which the zari was used.
Surti sari is another product that was supplied to South India and a small part of the total supply was sent to Sri Lanka via Tamil Nadu. Through Tamil Nadu brokers, traders from the city exported the sarees to Sri Lanka. But with the volatile situation there, brokers are not placing new orders.
“City-made saris are in high demand in Sri Lanka. But due to payment crisis, we are not supplying now. Moreover, the devaluation of the Sri Lankan Rupee makes business risky,” said Aashish Lodha, a textile businessman.
The fabric manufacturers who supply the raw material to the garment manufacturing units take time to supply the products. “The majority of garment units in Sri Lanka that source fabric from Surat are headquartered in the UK or other countries. Therefore, the fabric suppliers may not face payment problems, but the situation is not favorable for the smooth running of the business, which is why we have ceased operations for the time being,” said Dhiraj Shah of Shahlon Silk Ind Ltd.
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