Textile Industry of India

Source: Fibre to Fashion

The production of textiles and garments in India makes it one of the largest nations in the world in this sector. Textiles from India are exported to markets all over the world because of the country’s reputation for producing inexpensive goods made of high-quality cloth. The textile business in India is home to several pretty fascinating facts, which we will now discuss.


What does the term textile denote?

After food, the most fundamental requirement for human survival in the modern world is textile. And each individual on this planet is a user of it in some capacity. The cultural, social, economic, political, and religious norms of an individual are represented in their textiles in a way that is symbolic of their identity.

In point of fact, it has the ability to be used interchangeably with a local community, an entire state, or even an entire nation. The ability to express oneself and have an impact on others through the medium of textiles has become increasingly powerful.

The study of Indian history sheds light on the function and significance of the indigenous fabric. The khadi fabric, which Mahatma Gandhi was responsible for popularising, served as an agent of autarky. It was India’s way of demonstrating its resiliency and its togetherness in front of the world. Even in the present day, a significant number of political leaders recognise its importance and choose to dress in accordance with it.


Textile Industry of India and its history

Since the beginning of recorded history, India has been recognised globally for its extensive textile industry. Despite the fact that the textile industry in India had a sharp downturn during the time of colonial rule, it managed to recover some of its former glory in the early nineteenth century.


Calcutta was the location of the first textile mill in 1818; nevertheless, the actual action took place in Bombay, when the first cotton textile mill was founded 36 years later.

Ahmedabad, a potential competitor, opened its first cotton mill in 1861. The entrepreneurial spirit of the Gujaratis was instrumental in the development of the city of Ahmedabad’s industry.

During the latter half of the nineteenth century, the textile industry was able to demonstrate an almost instantaneous expansion. By the turn of the century, there were a total of 178 textile mills in operation across the country. During the early part of the twentieth century, there was a significant famine that caused a number of mills to be closed for an extended length of time.


Textile Industry and its relevance with India and its economy

India’s textile industry is both one of the oldest in the country and a significant one. It has been there for a very long time. The textile industry is particularly diverse due to the presence of hand-woven and hand-spun goods, as well as various mills. Because it is one of the most important industries in the country, the textile industry employs around 4.5 crore people, not counting the 35.22 lakh people who work in handlooms across the country.

The total value of India’s exports of materials and raw materials to the rest of the world, which reached at US$ 29.8 billion between April and December of 2021, includes a variety of different materials and raw resources. By the year 2029, it is anticipated that the value of this market will be greater than 209 billion dollars.

Cotton is produced in the greatest quantity in India than in any other country. It was estimated that 360,13 thousand bales of the crop were produced during the period of October 2021 through September 2022. In the years 2020-2021, India shipped 1.13 million metric tonnes worth of cotton yarn all over the world.

The textile sector in India has also seen a surge in investment not only from our own country but also from a number of countries and companies located in other parts of the world. Between April 2000 and December 2021, the industry attracted Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) of 3.93 billion dollars. This includes investment in dyed and printed products.

India’s economy has benefited tremendously from the country’s thriving textile industry. Because India participates in the global commerce of apparel and textiles, the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) has significantly increased, which has resulted in India receiving a significant amount of additional revenue.


Segments of textile industry of India

  1. Silk Textile Industry of India

Due to the unique qualities that it possesses, silk is sometimes referred to as the “queen of all materials.” India is home to more silk textile mills than any other country in the world, making it the greatest producer of silk in the world. India is the only country in the world that produces all of the commercially available varieties of silk, including Mulberry silk, Tropical Tasar silk, Oak Tasar silk, Muga silk, and Eri silk.

Karnataka, West Bengal, Andhra Pradesh, and Tamil Nadu are the states that top the pack when it comes to the production of silk. These states provide over 90% of India’s total silk production. The business has the potential to generate a large number of jobs, requires a low amount of initial capital investment, and offers excellent margins to silk growers.

The total market size for this sector increased to USD 49 billion in 2006-07, up from USD 37 billion in 2004-2005. During that same time period, the market for exporting textiles went from being worth 14 billion USD to 19 billion USD. The total value of the local market increased by 7 billion US dollars, going from 23 billion US dollars to 30 billion US dollars.


  1. Cotton Textile Industry of India

India is the country that produces the most cotton and has the most land dedicated to cotton farming, thus it makes sense that India would also be the world’s greatest cotton producer. In terms of natural fibres, the cotton textile industry is also the second most developed sector across the board in the textile industry.

When seen from a geographical perspective, this sector of the economy is the country’s most dispersed one. States, where it is prevalent, include Maharashtra, Gujarat, Tamil Nadu, Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal, Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Kerala, Haryana, Punjab, and Delhi.

5.8 million people make their living as cotton farmers, while another 50 million people are employed in the textile business as a direct or indirect result of cotton production, processing, or trade.


  1. Jute Textile Industry of India

Cotton dominates the textile sector in terms of overall production, although jute textiles come in a close second. The eastern parts of the country are most affected by it. Since it is primarily focused on export, the success of its exports is the only factor that can ensure its continued existence.

The states of West Bengal, Bihar, and Assam are the most important producers. Jute is produced almost entirely in the state of West Bengal in India. The sector provides a living for around 0.37 million people working in organised mills as well as several lakhs of farm families producing jute.


  1. Woollen Textile Industry of India

The sheep population in India is the third greatest in the world, which helps India maintain its position as the seventh largest producer of raw wool. However, due to a significant shortage of domestic production, the country is dependent on raw wool imports from Australia and New Zealand. These countries supply the majority of the world’s raw wool supply. The woollen textile sector often serves both the military and the civilian population of the nation, catering to their respective needs.

In comparison to cotton production across the country, this industry is quite unimportant. Punjab, Haryana, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, and Gujarat are among the most productive states in terms of agricultural output.



One of India’s most important economic sectors is the textile and clothing manufacturing sector. Additionally, it is the most important contributor to the country’s overall earnings in foreign currency. The sector is in a good position and has the potential to propel India to tremendous heights in the days and weeks ahead as a result of the abundance of raw materials, the wide diversity of designs, the big pool of trained personnel, and the government subsidiaries.



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