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Be UCA Compliant Rubber Board Chairman Cautions Exporters
18 June 2013
All exporters in the rubber industry should be careful about the anti-piracy law which has recently come up in the US, cautioned Smt. Sheela Thomas, Chairman, Rubber Board. As per the new Unfair Competition Act (UCA) passed in the US recently, the US buyers/importers are prevented from buying any product manufactured out of pirated versions of software or hardware used anywhere in its systems. This would mean that if a rubber manufacturer uses a pirated software or hardware, not only in any one step alone but anywhere in his business and sells the parts to a US company to become part of a larger product, the US company is liable for damages. This has resulted in an obvious shift in preferences of the US buyers for buying only from the lT compliant firms, Chairman said.
Capturing the share of almost 11.8 per cent of the total rubber goods export from lndia and growing at 5 percent, the US has been one of the most important traditional export market for India. However, lndian rubber industry is facing close competition from countries like China capturing 16.8% of total rubber articles imported into the US followed by Canada (11.7%), Indonesia (9.5%) as against a meager 1.2 per cent of India. While China has been able to compete due to its low cost offerings, other countries like Canada and Mexico gained in the US market by virtue of the presence of NAFTA agreement. In a scenario when the import demands of rubber articles are increasing in the US at the rate of l3%, the new UCA in the US has brought in new hopes to the Indian rubber industry.
India's software piracy rate of 63% is lower than those of competing countries compared to 77% in China and 72% in Thailand and 86% in Indonesia. Therefore rubber manufacturers in India need to increasingly implement more modern and value added technology and lT interventions in the process of manufacturing and evolving innovative products. This will help in meeting the growing competition in the international market on one hand and reap UCA benefit in the US on the other.
She further informed rubber exporters that the law requires IT compliance throughout the global value chain. Therefore even if the member may not be supplying directly to the US but to any other global market, the UCA still applies since these countries may be importing from India only to re-export it to the US. India may be a preferred supplier to all those intermediate markets finally targeting the US. Finally one may or may not be an exporter but their IT compliance will decide the stake of the final Indian exporter supplying to the US market and therefore any loss in the business at any stage in the value chain would impact all the concerned players. Therefore she cautioned the exporters and traders against using any pirated versions themselves and also against procuring from any foreign/domestic market without confirming the IT compliance.
She said that for more information of specific product lines within the rubber sector which would gain out of this law, exporters may visit Board’s website (www. rubberboard.org.in) or contact Dr. Tamanna Chaturvedi, Consultant, Indian Institute of Foreign Trade at email@example.com.