The Southern India Mills Association (SIMA) has requested Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edapadi Palaniswami to announce removal of a one per cent Agricultural Market Committee Cess on cotton as well as cotton waste in the State Budget for the year 2017-18. The Committee On GST has asked all states to decide the issue of the cess at their own levels because GST is likely to come into effect from next July, SIMA Chairman M Senthilkumar said.

He said that since all the states have already announced sops for the textile industry, it is only the Tamil Nadu-based industry which is in an awkward position as far as the competition is concerned. He said that compared to other states, the cost of production of spinners in Tamil Nadu is 15 higher than those in other states, because spinners in Tamil Nadu have to get cotton bales transported from other states to Tamil Nadu, at the rate of 6 per kg.

He recalled that the late Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa had assured that steps would be taken to abolish the cess when former SIMA Chairman S Dinakaran had met her on December 7, 2012, SIMA has requested the Tamil Nadu Government to abolish the cess on cotton and cotton waste for the benefit of the spinners, so that there is a level playing field, Senthilkumar said.