Director General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) restricted the export of raw human hairs vide a notification issued on 25th January 2022. This decision came in connection with the reports of under-invoicing and smuggling via Myanmar and Nepal to China.
“The export policy of human hair, unworked, whether or not washed or sourced; waste of human hair or any other form of raw human hair under ITC (HS) Code 0501 has been put under restriction, with immediate effect.” - Notification No. 51/2015–2020 New Delhi Dated: 25th January 2022
Times of India earlier reported an ED raid on a Human hair merchant exporter based In Hyderabad regarding receiving the sum of 16 crores through a Chinese batting app. Last year, ED also conducted searches at premises of various human hair exporters on alleged charges of being involved in under-invoicing, smuggling, and foreign exchange violation. Hyderabad seems to be the Hub of illegal activities around human hair export. All these raids, enquiries, and shocking revelations forced the government to took this step of restricting the export of raw hairs.
Now, the export of Raw Human Hair is under the restricted category, and it requires an Export License/Permit from DGFT. This simply means that no one can export any shipment of raw hair without prior approval of DGFT. Exporters of raw Human Hair will have to submit an application with the required details and documents to get approval.
Details Required to Get Export license for Raw Human Hair Export
- Quantity of raw hairs
- Total FOB Value in USD and in Ruppes
- Port of Loading/Shipment
- Port of Discharge
- Country to which exported
- Details of Foreign Buyer including- Name, Address, Mobile, email, etc.
- Consignee Details including- Name, Address, Mobile, email, etc.
The Members of Human Hair and Hair Products Manufacturers and Exporters Associatation welcomed the decision and asked the government to completely ban it. The members fear that those exporting illegally will find the ways to bend the laws.
As per Benjamin Cherian, founding President of Human Hair and Hair Products Manufacturers and Exporters Association, it is the right move to curb the illegal exporters. He also said that India is the biggest producer of Human hair globally, almost 80%, but makes only 2% of value-added products like wigs. Rest is officially and unofficially exported to china.
In India, West Bengal is the major hub for the industry besides Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, and Tamil Nadu. India has major competition with China, Cambodia, Vietnam, and Myanmar.
There are two types of Hairs collected in India - Remy and non-Remy. Remy hairs are premium quality hairs collected mainly from temples offered by people as part of their religious vows. Remy hairs are used for wigs and hair extension products. Non-Remy hairs are collected by people from villages and houses direct. They sell off these after segregating them to dealers, further selling them to merchant exporters.
The Hair export market in India is valued approx 6000–8000 crores, and it is believed that the illegal market is almost 500–1000 crores.
Due to the restriction on raw human hair export, every exporter will have to take prior permission from the DGFT in the form of an Export license to export raw human hair. This will include sharing all the details of the consignee and foreign buyer, ensuring transparency and accountability.