Textile Exporters in a Bind over Afghan Crisis

Textile traders in Surat are worried over pending payments of about Rs. 4,000 crores from Afghanistan which have got stuck with the Taliban taking control of the country.

Afghanistan’s central bank has instructed the commercial banks not allow corporate bank account holders to withdraw money for any purpose or to carry out any electronic transaction inside or outside of Afghanistan. “Earlier, we used to send garments and textiles through Dubai to Afghanistan. Lately, we were exporting to the nation through Bangladesh as we saw that it was cheaper to send through Bangladesh,” Champalal Bothra, general secretary, Federation of Surat Textile Traders Association, told ET.

“Exports have stopped now, but we are not sure when we will get our payments.

Nearly Rs. 4,000 crores are stuck.”

Afghanistan used to buy silk for turbans, textiles and readymade garments such as scarves, dresses and kaftans from India.

The Federation of Indian Export Organizations (FIEO) has advised exporters and importers to wait and watch before taking any step. “The Afghani currency has depreciated to 87 Afghan Afghani against US dollar from 80 Afghan Afghani in the last one week. While that augurs well for exporters, it pinches the importers,” said Ajay Sahai, director general, FIEO. S-ET

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