As the name suggests, the Apparel Export Promotion Council (AEPC) is the official organisation recognised by the government for promoting the export of apparels. Founded in 1978, AEPC supports Indian exporters in their business efforts and also eases the inflow of overseas buyers to India for the purchase of apparel.
AEPC was formed with the intention of promoting and supporting Indian exporters and to facilitate the establishment and growth of their business. It aims to give a competitive advantage to the Indian apparel industry and improve its global stature in a rounded and sustainable manner.
To achieve this, AEPC acts as a facilitator in the industry by promoting exports and generating employment opportunities in apparel export. It also strives to improve and sustain productivity and brand value.
In an effort to work for the Indian apparel export industry, AEPC is involved in various activities and initiatives. Let’s look at some of them.
AEPC is involved in the promotion and propagation of export of all types of ready-made garments. It undertakes various export promotion measures, market researches, and participates in the government’s foreign trade policy matters, including budgets and agreements,
It also monitors tariffs and restrictions imposed by importing countries, keeps abreast of the export efforts of competing countries, works on garment design and technology, and explores export potential in overseas markets through trade delegations, missions etc.
As India’s official apparel promotion council, one of AEPC’s roles is to popularise Indian garment markets to the importers and the general public in foreign countries and create a positive image of the Indian apparel industry.
The apparel export council also assists its members in understanding and properly utilising drawbacks, rules, procedures, licensing facilities, guidelines etc. Special importance is given to guide members coming from the small scale industry.
AEPC works on apparel design by setting up design centres, improving designs, patterns, quality of fabric etc. and strives to improve the technology, techniques, and know-how relating to apparel production. It also conducts training and skill development programmes for workers engaged in the apparel export industry in India.
The organization prepares action plans in collaboration with members to initiate effective export promotion, developing the market, scaling up production, setting overall and country-wise export targets, and other medium- and long-term goals.
An AEPC membership offers a lot of benefits. Here are some of them:
You can be a part of the prestigious biannual India International Garment Fair and clinch mega-deals with importers. AEPC will help you participate in international fairs and takes end-to-end care of participation-related issues. It also channelizes the right fairs for members based on its understanding of the market trends and recommendations from its networks.
AEPC helps you keep abreast of the latest trends in world fashion. Its research division provides fashion forecasts, upcoming demand patterns, and market dynamics.
You get listed in the Indian Exporters Directory and have access to the comprehensive Apparel Importers Directory, which helps in bringing the interested parties together.
You get access to AEPC’s year-round seminars, workshops, study groups and lectures, which features inputs from empanelled industry experts. Their expertise is available for AEPC members who may need consultation and guidance.
AEPC issues documents like Certificate of Origin and Export Performance Certificate (EPC) for duty-free import, which can be of great help to members.
Your membership will give you access to various industry statistics and information about the global apparel industry, thanks to AEPC’s publications and articles.
To register with AEPC, you have to be aware of and fulfil these eligibility criteria:
You must be a firm/society/organisation engaged in export of garments, whether as a manufacturer or as a merchant exporter.
In case you have a proprietary firm, you must be at least 18 years of age.
You must not be declared insolvent and should not have been convicted of misconduct or moral turpitude.
Once you are a member, you will need to renew your membership with the AEPC every year; non-renewal can lead to automatic cancellation.
To log in to this page, you must have your IE code and the Digital Signature Certificate (DSC) issued by the DGFT. You have to enter your IE code and company name to log in, and also select AEPC as your EPC name.
Thereafter, you will have to select the DSC prompted by the system.
In the next screen, you will have the option of applying for the Registration-Cum-Membership Certificate (RCMC).
In the RCMC application form, enter details related to your IE code, registered office address, head office address, branch-related information, list of directors/partners/proprietor or karta.
In the next page, you will be required to fill more details, such as entity type, exporter type, subscription type, export house/trading house type, and product category. Input your AEPC nodal office, your address of correspondence, authorised representative details, and miscellaneous data under ‘Other Information’.
In the next page, attach an undertaking on non-judicial stamp paper along with a self-certified copy of the IE code certificate issued by the DGFT.
In the ‘Additional Services Selection’ window that appears next, you can choose from the bouquet of services and products offered by the AEPC.
After these formalities are concluded, you can proceed to the payment section and enter your payment details and hit submit.
Once this is done, your application is submitted successfully. You will get to view/save a copy of the payment receipt and the application status.
There are various schemes and supports that can be availed of by exporters under the aegis of the AEPC. Let’s consider some of them:
AEPC’s market development schemes, which include Exporters Availed Market Access Initiative Scheme, Technology Upgradation Funds Scheme, Market Development Assistance Scheme, Focus Market Scheme, Textile Centre Infrastructure Development Scheme, Apparel Park, Scheme for Integrated Textiles Parks, and Special Economic Zones.
Interest Equalisation Scheme, or interest subvention, is an interest deduction available on pre- and post-shipment export credit, such as packing credit.
Technology Upgradation Fund Scheme was introduced to facilitate new and appropriate technology.
Rebate of State Levies Scheme supports the textile sector to provide zero-rated export taxes and raise the overall level of competitiveness in the global market.
The AEPC structure comprises executive committees (EC) and subcommittees (SC). The EC is divided into four geographical regions, each of which has a few members and is headed by a chairman. Each SC has an advisory committee, export promotion committee, staff committee, finance and budget committee, knitwear committee, state partnership SC, CSR subcommittee, apparel house committee, and IT core committee. The entire setup is headed by a national chairman.