Indian Footwear Industry Collaborates with DPIIT & BIS to Enhance Quality Standards

Important discussions were held making Quality Control Orders optional for non-performing footwear and mandatory for performance footwear, while proposing practical solutions for managing legacy stock.
Indian Footwear Industry Collaborates with DPIIT & BIS to Enhance Quality Standards

In a recent meeting between the Indian footwear industry and government officials, significant strides were made towards improving quality control and regulatory standards in the sector. Representatives from both domestic and multinational footwear brands convened with officials from the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT) and the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) to discuss Quality Control Orders (QCOs) and other pressing industry matters.

One of the most notable achievements discussed during the meeting was the footwear industry’s remarkable milestone of surpassing 1,000 registered licenses with the BIS. This accomplishment underscores the industry’s commitment to adhering to stringent quality standards and ensuring consumer safety. BIS officials lauded the industry’s robust support and active participation in achieving this milestone, emphasizing the mutual benefits of such collaboration.

The discussions were marked by a sense of mutual appreciation. BIS officials expressed their gratitude for the industry’s proactive stance and efforts to comply with regulatory requirements. In return, industry representatives acknowledged the constructive support from BIS, particularly in simplifying standards and the product manual, which has been instrumental in navigating the complexities of compliance and standardization.

A significant portion of the meeting centered around the industry’s request to differentiate the application of QCOs. The footwear industry proposed that QCOs should be optional for general-purpose and fashion footwear but mandatory for performance footwear. This distinction, they argued, would help create a level playing field and ensure that high-performance footwear meets the necessary quality benchmarks without unduly burdening all segments of the industry.

Another critical issue addressed was the challenge of managing legacy stock. The industry proposed a practical approach to liquidating legacy stock by allowing a grace period based on the manufacturing date plus three years. However, there was significant discussion around this, with most participants suggesting the sale of all stocks manufactured before 01.08.2024 without any time restrictions. Some members advocated for a time limit of 2-3 years, while the All India MSME Footwear Council suggested liquidation without any time limit to prevent scrapping and distress selling.

The meeting was characterized by patient listening and in-depth discussions, which were greatly appreciated by the industry representatives. The officials’ willingness to engage in meaningful dialogue and consider the industry’s suggestions fostered a positive atmosphere. This collaborative spirit is expected to pave the way for more effective regulation and support for the footwear industry.

In conclusion the productive engagement between the footwear industry and government officials marks a significant step towards enhancing quality standards and regulatory compliance. With continued support from the BIS and DPIIT, the industry is well-positioned to contribute to a Great India, setting new benchmarks for excellence and innovation. The collaborative efforts demonstrated in this meeting highlight the potential for sustainable growth and mutual benefits, ensuring that the Indian footwear industry remains competitive and consumer-focused in the global market. The industry is hopeful for a positive response from DPIIT regarding making BIS optional for general-purpose and fashion footwear, as it used to be.

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