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Tuesday, Feb 03, 2004

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`India will benefit more in the post-quota period'

Our Bureau

Mumbai , Feb. 2

INDIA is poised to reap the benefits of a market without barriers post 2005. This is especially so considering that China may still face restrictions in several trade segments up to 2008.

According to Mr Thomas G. Travis, Managing Partner, Sandler, Travis & Rosenberg, a garment consultancy firm in the US, factors that would significantly impact sourcing in 2005 are the World Trade Organisation membership status; tariff preferences and the Free Trade Agreement; quality and price of products; timely deliveries; enforcement efforts of the US Customs; ethical sourcing concerns, especially with regard to trade and labour; and currency fluctuation linkages.

Mr Travis said most buyers, especially the large ones, had to reassess their sourcing mix, and with the possibility of some countries still being saddled with quotas and restrictions, buyers were unwilling to source all their requirements from one source and were hoping to spread the `risk'.

For countries such as India, this throws up opportunities.

He added India stood to gain the most, because the US's favoured business partners, for e.g., Mexico, found it difficult to compete with India because yarns were cheaper, cost of production was lower and the infrastructure was developed.

He cited China, Bangladesh and Pakistan as countries that had `room to grow'.

Though China is a low-cost manufacturer such actions will only repel large buyers from relying on it in a big way.

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