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Chennai plastic producers seek steps to curb input prices

Our Bureau

Chennai , May 6

THE Chennai Plastics Manufacturers' and Merchants' Association has called for support measures to control increasing prices of plastic raw materials.

According to the association, a kilogramme of plastic raw material has increased from Rs 40 in April 2003 to Rs 60 in April this year. Raw material manufacturers, primarily Reliance, which accounts for about 85 per cent of the production, have hiked prices 20 times in the last one-year.

Plastic product manufacturers in the small-scale and tiny sectors have been thrown out of business. The raw material production units are concentrated in Gujarat and West Bengal, and the units here are dependent on them for supply. They need support along the lines of that extended to units using iron and steel as raw material, the association said in a press release.

The association has called for a reduction in customs duty to 5 per cent from the prevailing 20 per cent. The Centre should consider scrapping the Special Additional Duty and reduce excise duty to 8 per cent from 16 per cent as applicable to units using iron as raw material.

A price regulatory committee may be set up to review raw material pricing on a quarterly basis. This would help to control the monthly price increases by raw material manufacturers. The Centre had assured, when IPCL was taken over by Reliance, that such a committee would be set up to ensure viable supply of raw materials to small units, according to the association. It has urged that the plastic raw material manufacturers should set up warehouses in States where manufacturing facilities are not available.

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