Regular-article-logo Tuesday, 26 September 2023

Boycott China letters to Tata, Ambani

Campaign to stop using imported Chinese parts in businesses

Our Special Correspondent New Delhi Published 25.06.20, 01:31 AM
A vendor sells China-made products at a roadside stall in Calcutta.

A vendor sells China-made products at a roadside stall in Calcutta. File photo

The Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT), the country’s largest traders’ association, has written to top 50 industrialists, including Mukesh Ambani, Ratan Tata, Adi Godrej, Azim Premji, Kumar Mangalam Birla and Anand Mahindra, to support its ‘Boycott China’ campaign and stop using imported Chinese parts in their businesses.

The traders’ body, which is said to be close to the ruling BJP, has sent out the appeal after roping in chief ministers, politicians, Bollywood celebrities and cricket players to boycott Chinese brands.


CAIT has also urged Infosys co-founder N.R. Narayana Murthy, Vikram Kirloskar, Shiv Nadar, Pallonji Mistry, Uday Kotak, Nusli Wadia, Shashi Ruia, Madhukar Parekh and Harsh Mariwala among other prominent industrialists, to lend their support to its “Bhartiya Samaan-Humaara Abhimaan” campaign.

“We believe that the people of India consider you as a successful entrepreneur... and we make a humble request to you to wholeheartedly participate in the campaign that has the potential to reshape India’s journey as a global superpower by reducing China’s dominance,” Praveen Khandelwal, secretary-general of CAIT, said in the letter.

CII president Uday Kotak had earlier told The Telegraph that “the government should not get into the act of banning Chinese products….it should be left to the consumers to decide”.

Maruti Suzuki chairman R. C. Bhargava and Bajaj Auto managing director Rajiv Bajaj have reportedly said that the campaign to boycott Chinese goods was not feasible as Chinese components were more competitive and necessary for manufacturing vehicles.

CAIT has been at the forefront of an anti Chinese products campaign in India following the spread of coronavirus that originated in Wuhan province in China and has ravaged the global economy including India. The heightened tensions between the two countries in the Galwan province in Ladakh over the last two months that reached a flashpoint on the night of July15 with the martyrdom of 20 Indian soldiers has further exacerbated matters.

"There are various ways in which your organisation can participate in this movement. You and your organisation have always stood firmly in solidarity and support of the nation and this could be a great opportunity for you to show that nothing comes before nation and your support and initiative will surely encourage other industrialists of the country to follow you in order to make India a 'self-dependent Bharat'."

"The import from China takes place only because they are necessary for manufacturing vehicles. The components which come in from China, generally go into the supplies from the vendors - the various assembly and components which come from the vendors, they incorporate most of the Chinese imports," R C Bhargava, chairman of MSIL was quoted in the media recently.

"It is not easy for these vendors to find alternative sources or develop alternative sources. It takes a lot of time. What is more important is it will take a lot of cost penalty on the side of the vendors which ultimately means a cost penalty to the consumer".

However, Pawan Goenka, the managing director of M&M, believes it is possible to reduce dependence on imports of components and tooling in the automotive sector by half in the next 3 years.

"How to promote make in India? Like they say charity begins at home. Can all OEMs and Tier I suppliers pledge to reduce component and tooling imports by half, in 3 years. That will be 75,000 crores more manufacturing value addition," he had tweeted.

CAIT has said that India imports four categories of products from China i.e. finished goods, raw material, spare parts for assembly of goods in India and technology driven products, and the organisation has decided to boycott Chinese Goods in a phased manner.

For the first phase it has earmarked "finished goods" from an identified list of about 450 broad categories of products which nearly has more than 3,000 products and those products are already being manufactured in India. In all, the campaign aims to reduce imports from across the border worth Rs 100,000 crore ($13.3 billion) by December 2021. India imported goods worth $65.26 billion in 2019-20 from China.

China is India's second largest trading partner with bilateral trade of over $81.86 billion in 2019-20. It accounts for 27 percent of the $17.5 billion overall import of automotive components in India every year.

Follow us on: