Indian Textile Machinery: Problems and Prospects

The global production of textile machinery annually is worth over $20 billion. Among the biggest manufacturers of textile machinery are Italy, Germany, Switzerland, France and China. India does not figure at the top, but it has a big growth opportunity and prospect on this count, especially with growing demand in the export market of textile products. According to a knowledge paper prepared by Suvin Advisors for India International Textile Machinery Exhibitions Society (India ITME Society) earlier this year, “India can avail of this opportunity by upgrading its textile industry especially in the area of modernisation of its weaving and processing sectors. China is leading in the field of textile exports today because they installed a large set-up of spindles, rotor and shuttle-less weaving machines. Today, China is manufacturing the entire range of machineries for the textile industry, not only spinning, weaving and processing but also knitting, embroidery and plants for the non-woven industry.”

But opportunities are one thing, and current realities quite another. Incidentally, global shipments in most of the textile machinery segments saw marginal-to-sharp declines in the last one year. The deliveries of new short staple spindles, for instance, dropped 15 per cent from 2013 to 2014. These declines were revealed in the May 2015 edition of the International Textile Machinery Shipment Statistics (ITMSS) published by the International Textile Manufacturers Federation (ITMF). The latest report, which covered six segments of textile machinery: spinning, draw texturing, weaving, large circular knitting, flat knitting, and finishing machinery, was compiled in cooperation with 110 textile machinery manufacturers, representing a comprehensive measure of world production.

Yet, given the slightly dismal global scenario, the prospects of the Indian textile machinery industry however lie elsewhere. The textile machinery industry in the country has grown mostly after Independence. There are roughly 1,000 machinery and component manufacturing units in India, with 300 of them producing complete machinery and the remaining various textile machinery components – all with a total investment of around ₹2,000 crore

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