The market watches gloomy sales – The New Indian Express

Express news service

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: While educational establishments are preparing to reopen, the school market, which has been at a standstill for nearly two years, is hoping for a revival. According to traders, the market has not yet resumed as schools reopen in the middle of the school year. The school market industry suffered huge losses in the wake of the pandemic epidemic and the lockdowns that followed.

The footwear industry has suffered losses to the tune of Rs 90 crore over the past two years due to the pandemic, while the textile industry has suffered losses to the tune of Rs 500 crore. The state government has given the green light to reopen educational institutions from November 1. A few days before the reopening, traders are hoping for a recovery in the market.

Kerala General Secretary Vyapari Vyavasayi Ekopana Samiti, SS Manoj, said the market was showing signs of recovery. “The market has been dead for almost two years now. The trading community is reeling from a deep financial crisis because it was unable to liquidate the stocks it bought before the pandemic, ”Manoj said. He said many educational institutions force parents to buy school uniforms and other stationery and study-related materials from the school store. “It has a negative impact on the business of traders. These schools charge more for these products which are available at a reasonable price in the market. It must stop, ”Manoj said.

Parents’ purchasing capacity has also declined as the pandemic forces them to live on a strict family budget. “I only buy school uniforms for my child. There are only a few months left at the end of the academic year. We also did not get a tuition waiver. We paid the same fee structure for the online course. The cost of living has also increased after the pandemic, ”said Suchithra, a relative.

Demand for shoes is falling
According to Husain Kunnukara, state treasurer of the Kerala Retail Footwear Association (KRFA), the school market has yet to pick up. There are approximately 30,000 traders involved in the shoe trade in the state. “We did not buy new shares for fear of losses. Business does not pick up because schools reopen in the middle of the school year. Traders are struggling to manage their losses and keep the business going, ”said Husain Kunnukara. He said traders could not yet sell the older stocks. “The purchasing capacity of the population has also declined. People don’t buy a lot of fast moving products, especially leather shoes ranging from Rs 500 to Rs 1,200. They now prefer low-end shoes that cost less than Rs 500, ”he added. .

The textile industry is slowly picking up
The school uniform industry has slowly started to pick up. The textile industry is estimated to have suffered heavy losses of around Rs 500 crore over the past two years. There are approximately 18,000 traders in the textile sector in the state.

Textile Garment Dealers Welfare Association Secretary of State K Usman said parents have started going out to shop for their children. “The time restrictions are still there and by the current standard stores should close their shutters before 9pm. The government should lift these restrictions so that we get more business, ”K Usman said. “The textile industry is changing as fashion and designs change from time to time. We cannot sell the stocks we bought in 2019 because the trend has changed, ”he added. He added that the textile industry will suffer more as the Center prepares to increase the GST from 5% to 12% effective January 1, 2022.

“It will have a negative impact on traders and customers. The industry will suffer more once the GST is increased, ”Usman said. Vinod R Kurup, who has run a stationery store in MG Road since 1991, said the market has yet to pick up.

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