Morbi’s export business gets hit as US considers imposing anti-dumping duties on ceramic tile imports from India

Morbi, India’s renowned ceramics manufacturing hub, is bracing for a potential blow to its export business as the United States considers imposing anti-dumping duties on ceramic tile imports from India.

The move has already led to a significant disruption in orders, with manufacturers reporting that at least 25 per cent of orders from the US have been halted, and more cancellations are anticipated.

The development comes at a precarious time for Morbi’s ceramic industry, which is already grappling with sluggish demand due to a duty hike by Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) nations and an economic slowdown in European countries, two major export destinations.

According to KG Kundariya, former president of the Morbi Ceramic Association, the US ceramic tile market heavily relies on imports, and India is a significant exporter to that market.

Recently, US tile makers filed a petition seeking the imposition of anti-dumping duties on ceramic tile imports from India, fuelling concerns among US companies that they may face hefty retroactive import levies if the duties are implemented.

“Dispatches to the US have been completely halted from Morbi,” said Nilesh Jetparia, another ex-president of the association. “Unless there is greater clarity on the duties that are likely to be imposed, an importer will not risk paying additional duties on their purchases. As a result, the majority of orders are on hold,” he added.

The US accounts for 8-9 per cent of Morbi’s total ceramic tile and product exports, with an average of 800 containers shipped to the US every month, according to industry estimates.

Morbi, home to around 800 ceramic tile manufacturing units, exports products worth Rs 19,000 crore (approximately USD 2.3 billion) annually to over 180 countries, including the US, Saudi Arabia, UAE, Iraq, Israel, Taiwan, and various European nations.

As global trade faces disruptions from the ongoing supply chain crisis, Morbi’s ceramic manufacturers find themselves in a precarious position, with uncertainty looming over a significant portion of their export business to the US market.


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