China is becoming a trouble spot for Indian hair exporters though it accounts for 80 per cent of Indian hair exports. Payment of Rs 300 crore is stuck in China against their exports and exporters are uncertain when they will be reimbursed.
Additionally, the buyers from China are also putting pressure on Indian exporters to ship hair at a 40 per cent discount. This will put pressure on the margins of the exporters who sells hair at an average price of $150-$200 per kg.
“Many hair exporters have sent hairs to China without letter of credits. They have sent the hairs to third party bonded warehouse. Chinese buyers bought hairs from these warehouses. But in the process, the Indian exporters have not got their money. This has happened to exporters across India, but the worst affected have been those who are from West Bengal,” said Sunil Eamani, member of Human Hair and Hair Products Manufacturers and Exporters Association of India and CEO of Indus Hair Extension.
In India, West Bengal is the major hub for the industry besides Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and Tamil Nadu.
Raw human hair is mainly collected from households and temples of these states and these primarily cater to the beauty market globally.
Two types of hair are collected in India – remy and non-remy hair. Remy hair, the best grade, is collected from temples where pilgrims donate their hair as part of a religious vow. This quality is mainly used to make hairpieces and wigs. Non-Remy hair is a household waste collected by small groups of people in villages and cities. They segregate that and sell to dealers. The biggest market for human hair products is the United States, where the products are popular among African Americans, Orthodox Jews and fashionistas.
China imports non-remy hairs from India. Washim Akram, owner of West Bengal based S.A. M Hair Exports, said “We are pursuing with buyers in China, but with no result. We do not know when we will get our payment.”
Eamani added that China is now asking for a 30%-40% discount on hair exports. “That is putting a pressure on our margins,” he added. He said that the Indian hair export market is around $1.5 billion.
Dark Indian hair satisfies the traditional beauty standards and has a huge variety, and this is what makes it so popular. Moreover, hair extension clubs across the globe mostly prefer Indian human hair with high quality, dark, slightly wavy textures.
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