Exporters body AEPC on Monday said it is promoting sustainable manufacturing practices such as usage of environment- friendly technologies to reduce carbon emission in different garment clusters of the country to boost exports. Apparel Export Promotion Council of India (AEPC) is holding a series of deliberations with all stakeholders, including brands, associations, and industry on the subject.
The council is informing the industry about adopting sustainability practices such as ways to promote water and energy conservation, waste water management and chemical management, monitoring of carbon emission, and certification for green building.
The exercise assumes significance as the European Union (EU), a key export destination for India, has decided to impose carbon tax on imported goods if their manufacturing process involves polluting practices.
The EU accounts for about 18 per cent of the country’s total exports.
In a statement, AEPC said it has initiated AISA (Apparel Industry Sustainability Action) to promote such manufacturing practices.
The council has “hosted road shows in the five prominent garment clusters in the country…from May 5-12 at Tirupur, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Jaipur and Delhi-NCR (Gurugram),” it said.
AEPC Chairman Naren Goenka said the objective of these road shows was to map the existing sustainability status across clusters and to give them an opportunity to showcase their sustainability measures to reputed brands, document best stories pan India to showcase them to global buyers and brands.
“The takeaways of road shows will help us to have a policy dialogue with the government for suitable policy interventions for supporting MSMEs for better preparedness in the changing scenario,” he said.
Sudhir Sekhri, Vice Chairman AEPC said the global garment production is expected to increase by 63 per cent by 2030, with a huge contribution by the Indian garment industry.
“This spectacular growth brings with it an ever-growing global concern on the detrimental impact that this fashion industry brings on the environment,” Sekhri said. He added that transition to a green environment has become the top priority for the EU.
The European Commission’s climate change strategy is focused on making Europe a net zero emitter of greenhouse gases and becoming climate neutral by 2050.
“We are trying to brace the industry and sensitize them through these road shows to be sustainable, which is no more a choice left for us,” Sekhri said.
AEPC has partnered with Brands and Sourcing Leaders Association (BSL) for this initiative, which has plans to award companies that have made strides in the sustainability domain.
Mithileshwar Thakur, Secretary General, AEPC said sustainability is a “serious” issue which industry can ignore only at its own peril.