China, USA, Germany and Japan are top sports goods exporting countries in the world and are giving stiff competition to India.
The study, prepared by the ASSOCHAM Economic Research Bureau (AERB), highlighted that, India has exported sports goods worth Rs 768 crore and imported the same worth Rs 2,400 crore in 2012-13. The United Kingdom (UK), United States of America (USA) and Australia are the top three importers of India-made sports goods. The major items of exports are inflatable balls, cricket bats, general exercise equipment, sports net and protective gear for cricket.
“India’s exports of sports goods are low and uncompetitive as it ranks at 30th position across the world in total exports of sports goods thereby accounting for a share of about 0.2 per cent during 2008-2012 while its major counterpart China has managed to increase its share significantly from 33.5 per cent to 40.5 per cent during the aforesaid period,” said the study.
There are mainly nine clusters of sports goods industry in India which are mainly unorganized. Major manufacturing concentrations are in and around Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai and Gurgaon. Besides, Jalandhar and Meerut clusters alone account for over 75 per cent of total sports goods industry. The unorganized sector accounts for 75 per cent whereas the organized sector is merely 25 per cent. The industry is labor intensive and provides employment to about 1.1 million people including a large number of women workers.
To revive the sports goods industry, the study has suggested setting up composite sports clusters equipped with technical and logistics support of international standards as that would push India’s exports from the sports goods sector to touch Rs 1,000 crore mark by 2018.