India's textiles and clothing exports declined to $20.94 billion in 2008-09 from $22.14 billion in 2007-08, though it increased marginally from $19.15 billion in 2006-07, Panabaaka Lakshmi, minister of state for textiles, informed the Lok Sabha on Friday.
However, in rupee terms, the exports of textiles and clothing during 2008-09 were of the order of Rs96,309 crore as against Rs89,121 crore in 2007-08, representing an appreciation of 8.07 per cent, the minister noted.
In absolute terms, the textiles and clothing exports as a percentage of India's total exports declined to 11.47 per cent in 2008-09 from 15.16 per cent in 2006-07 and 13.59 per cent in 2007-08.
As per advance information received from some segments of the industry, there has been a considerable decline in the exports of readymade garment and cotton products during the first two quarters of the current financial year, the minister said.
The government has been holding discussions at the highest levels with exporters of textiles and garments to find out ways and means to counter the adverse effects of the global economic slowdown on India's textiles exports, Panabaaka Lakshmi said, adding that under the Foreign Trade Policy 2009-14, various incentives have been introduced or enhanced for the sector.
The minister said commercial and trade bodies in Japan, meanwhile, had evinced interest in India's textiles products during that visit of a delegation headed by the minister of textiles to Tokyo. A large Japanese house has also enquired about setting up commercial installations in India.
A delegation headed by the minister of textiles, Dayanidhi Maran and senior officers of the ministry and heads of textiles export promotion council, besides representatives from the textile industry visited Japan in July 2009.