India’s plastic exports in February 2024 were worth $997 million, up 14.3 per cent from $872 million in the same period a year ago. However, shipments in the April-February period of the 2023-24 fiscal were down by 4.4 per cent at $10.43 billion, against $10.91 billion during the year-ago period.

A feature of the exports was record shipments of fishing nets in February, 2024. Besides, there was a 29.7 per cent increase in exports of cordage, fishnets and monofilaments as a result of higher sales of twine, cordage, ropes and cables made of polyethylene or polypropylene and made-up fishing nets.

Significant growth

According to Plastics Export Promotion Council (Plexconcil), significant export growth was witnessed in February across a majority of products including plastic raw materials, plastic films and sheets, flexible intermediate bulk container (FIBC), woven sacks, woven fabrics, tarpaulin, medical items and plastic pipes and fittings. 

However, shipments of writing instruments and stationery, consumer and houseware products, human hair and related products besides miscellaneous products faced problems. 

Plexconcil Chairman Hemant Minocha said, “India’s export growth in February, 2024 underscores our nation’s increasing influence on the world stage. Despite challenges faced by certain sectors like writing instruments and stationery products, our resilient approach continues to drive progress.”

India will probably end the 2023-24 fiscal with record high shipments of made-up fishing nets. “The export of FIBC, woven sacks, woven fabrics and tarpaulin showed a positive growth of 27.5 per cent due to higher sales of sacks and bags of plastics and flexible intermediate bulk containers”. 

The export of leather cloth, laminates and floor coverings increased by 27.4 per cent in February due to increased sales of vinyl chloride polymer floor coverings, decorative laminates and textile fabrics impregnated, coated, covered or laminated with plastics. “India’s decorative laminate exports are expected to reach all-time highs by the end of the 2023-24 fiscal. Sales of syringes, catheters, cannulae and blood transfusion apparatus contributed to a 12 per cent increase in medical plastics exports in February, 2024,” he said. 

Shipments of blood transfusion equipment and cardiac catheters could be a record high, while flexible and rigid packaging items exports were up by 27.3 per cent on increased sales of plastic sacks and bags, plastic caps and closures and other articles used for packaging or transporting goods. 

The export of plastic films and sheets increased by 21.9 per cent in February, 2024 as a result of higher sales of self-adhesive plastic films and sheets, propylene films and sheets, flexible polyethylene terephthalate films and sheets and other plastic films and sheets for sun and dust control. 

Exports of plastic pipes and fittings rose by 17.1 per cent as a result of increasing sales of vinyl chloride polymer tubes and pipes as well as fittings, including elbows, flanges and joints for pipes. Vinyl chloride polymer tubes and pipes shipments may also top record high.