Kolkata, Sep 22 (IANS) Prices of consumer appliances in India are likely to remain stable during the forthcoming festive season (October-November), an industry official said here on Tuesday.
“Looking at the current trend, although prices will not fall, there won’t be an increase either. This should help increase consumption in the festive season,” Godrej Appliances business head and executive vice president Kamal Nandi told media persons here.
He said although prices of raw materials has fallen in the recent past, the US dollar appreciation has prevented companies from reducing the prices.
“Chemicals and pre-coated steels – mainly from Korea – are some of the materials which are imported. While components for certain goods has to be imported, microwaves, for instance largely depends on the import,” he said.
Nandi reasoned that even though the global prices of commodities used in consumer appliances had fallen – implying lower cost of production, the benefits could not be passed onto the consumer as the US dollar appreciated fast against the Indian rupee.
“However, the US dollar has stabilised now,” he said.
On Tuesday, the Bombay Stock Exchange cited the exchange rate of a US dollar at Rs.65.63.
The company, which focuses on manufacturing their goods in India has been able to indigenise 80 percent of refrigerators – its largest unit sales earner – while it still continues to use imported materials on the goods.
“We are, nevertheless, gradually using Indian made pre-coated steel (which has leather-like feel) on the side panels of the refrigerators of premium grades,” said Nandi.
In the festive season, the company expects consumer buying sentiment to revive.
“The (consumer appliances) industry can expect the festive season to be little better”, Nandi said.
He said while consumers who had postponed buying in the summer season will resume their purchases, while the agri-income in the rural markets will fuel growth in upcountry areas.