Kolkata, Jan 8 (IANS) Exports of jute products and its diversified items grew by 24 per cent in the last five years, Union Textiles Minister Smriti Irani said on Monday.
“Today, we celebrate the legacy of jute. Since 2014, we have seen a growth of 24 per cent in exports of jute products and diversified products,” she said at the inaugural of the Ministry’s outreach programme at the recently restored 185-year-old Heritage Currency Building.
Delegates from 14 nations and over 70 buyers are participating in the four-day event.
On the occasion, Textiles Secretary Raghvendra Singh said the Ministry has been trying to find ways and means to enhance income of weavers and also to connect them with garment manufacturers to increase their margins.
He said the Ministry is supporting weavers and crafts persons in 40 districts of India.
Irani said the Centre is committed to the welfare of jute farmers and workers.
“We have ensured that any packaging facility that the industry receives from the Central government is conditioned to the fact that payments to farmers and workers will be made and their welfare will be ensured,” she said.
She had advocated for the jute industry to reduce dependence on government orders and go for enhanced diversification of jute products, which would in turn boost exports.
Incidentally, the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) had recently approved 100 per cent of the food grains and 20 per cent of the sugar to be mandatorily packed in jute bags thereby expanding the scope of Jute Packaging Material (JPM) Act, 1987, which was brought in to protect the interest of the jute sector from the plastic packaging segment.