Surat, Mar 1: The already-crunched zari industry in the diamond city is concerned with the Gujarat government's decision to introduce value added tax (VAT) on it from the next month.
In this regard, various zari manufacturers associations are holding meeting here today to prepare a memorandum to voice the woes of zari sector before the State and the Centre.
Surat zari manufacturers' association president Devesh Bhai Zariwala said, the decision to impose four per cent VAT will affect the sector, which is already facing a multitude of problems.
''The main problem that zari industry faces is the increase of raw material prices, specially of copper, silver and gold, which have gone up by 20-25 per cent,'' he said and added that a decline in demand for zari has been witnessed of late from some States.
Association secretary R M Desai said the market demand for zari has not grown in proportion to the cost increase and due to this many zari units in and around the city are facing the threat of closure.
''The decison to impose VAT will only aggravate the crisis,'' he expressed.
Meanwhile, Southern Gujarat Chamber of Commerce and Industry has also supported the zari association. Its president Dilip N Chasmawala said, ''We feel that the decision to impose VAT is not taken at the right time. It will adversely affect both zari amd diamond sectors.''