Friday, June 5, 2009

Major Furniture Cluster City of Pakistan-Gujrat-1

Real wood furniture is the most popular furniture in existence. It's been around for hundreds of years and probably existed when the cave people got tired of squatting on the dirt floor of their caves and looked around for a better way. Furniture industry is developing gradually at its own and the idea of setting up showrooms on G.T Road, and Gujrat By pass is increasing. The estimated overall furniture sale from Gujrat is about Rs. 500 million per annum. Furniture cluster of Gujrat is famous for the production of quality wooden furniture. Gujrat was known for its furniture manufacturing even before the independence because of the availability of cheap skilled labor. Presently most of the manufacturers are depending on traditional method (labor intensive technology) that results in the low productivity. Following are the categorization of the Units with respect to capacity of the major cluster Gujrat.


Micro Sized Units
According to the statistics provided by the industry, there are about 300-325 micro sized units involved in the business of furniture manufacturing. The number 300 include all the units that are either directly or indirectly involved in the furniture manufacturing. These units are vertically integrated and are involved in the different stages of furniture manufacturing. Some of these units also have organized themselves in specialized products manufacturing, i.e. one unit is producing only one kind of products not all the products (e.g. a unit producing chairs will only produce chairs). The furniture manufacturing units are selling their products in semi finished and finished form in Gujrat as well in the other cities.

The small-scaled units can be further divided into:

 Saw Mills
 Furniture Manufacturers
 Upholstery Units
 Polishing & Finishing Units

Small Sized Units
Gujrat furniture cluster consists of about 35-40 small sized units. These units manufacture the furniture themselves as well as depend on the micro sized units for their manufacturing requirements. In the second case these units buy the semi finished furniture from micro sized units and then finish these products. These Units have their own show rooms to display their finished products. Most of their sales are domestic (inside country) but a few of them are also involved in the exports. These units have workers ranging from 15 to 50 in number depending upon the amount of work. These units sometimes also hire workers on contract basis in case of more orders.

Medium Sized Units
Gujrat cluster consists of 4 to 5 medium-sized units. These units can be called as the market leaders because of their level of achievement. Most of these units are operating at least for the last 30 to 40 years and have developed a lot during this time period. These units can be called self-sufficient because they have solved most of their problems and issues related to production. These units have workers ranging from 50 to 100 in number depending on the work load.

Employment Generation
According to the estimates provided by the industry there are about 7,000 to 8,000 persons in Gujrat that are directly involved in the furniture manufacturing. These persons can be divided into the categories of carpenters, polishers, upholstery workers and the general laborers. As far as the training of this work force is concerned, there is no specialized training institute for furniture workers in Gujrat except for the wood working service center but this center is producing only 10 certified furniture workers per year. These workers can work as supervisors but the quantity is negligible as compare to the demand of supervisors and skilled workers in the cluster.

Total Production
The estimated annual wood consumption is around 350,000-400,000 cubic ft. The average cost of this wood is around Rs. 160 million calculating on the basis of 400 rupees per cubic foot on an average. Besides this around 100 million of manmade material is also used. Hardly, any source available to gather the anticipated growth rate. Estimated growth figure is around 10%.

Capacity Utilization
Capacity utilization of the existing unit is not sufficient even to meet the demand of the domestic market. It is below 50%. None of the unit has the capability to produce goods at mass level. Even the medium sized units take minimum 3-4 months for an order. Sufficient gap exists and it is increasing day by day with the increase in the population of the country.

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