Chinese lighting, decorative items have few competitors: Traders
With less than a week left for Diwali, shopping is on the rise in various markets in the national Capital. Apart from crackers, Delhiites are buying decorative and gift items.
Even as the Delhi government has imposed a ban on Chinese crackers, taking note of environment and health grounds, traders said Chinese goods were still preferred for decoration and gifting purposes as there were limited options in the market.
Even though there has been a slight dip in demand for China-made Ganesha idols and other figurines, which have become popular over the years in India, traders said there was no reduction in demand for Chinese lighting items.
Devraj Baweja, president of the Delhi Traders Confederation, said, “At present, there are not many options in the market to challenge Chinese electrical items, and therefore, a large number of Indian customers buy China-made series lights (ladiyan). Initially, when Chinese lighting items came into the market, Indian manufacturers would pose a competition. But over the years, Chinese products have dominated the Indian market. Even as customers may complain about their durability, they are preferred by customers because of lower price and more brightness.”
Baweja, however, added that customers were considering other choices for gift boxes, glass items and Ganesha or other gods’ idols. “There is a drop in the sale of Chinese god idols by 10 per cent. However, these are rough estimates and the real data will come after Diwali,” said Baweja.
Maintaining that a long-term approach is required for Indian products to compete with the Chinese ones, Praveen Kumar, member, Sadar Bazaar Traders Association, said, “All the Diwali stock including Chinese crackers was purchased around four months back. Not buying Chinese products now will ultimately impact Indian wholesalers. For the future, however, the government will have to support small-time Indian manufacturers and certain Acts like labour laws must be reformed.”