Over 38, 00,000 weaving industries have been built throughout India, and more than 15, 00,000 domestic weaving industries have been set up in the states of North and Eastern parts of India. On the other hand, the southern states also have their huge share of weaving industries, for example, the southern state of Andhra Pradesh houses some 3, 20,000 weaving industries.
The weaving industry in India is valued at around $127 billion in size. The sector is a large foreign exchange earner, and is the second-largest employer (after the agricultural sector) in the country. India’s share in the global textiles exports is just 5%, which is minuscule as compared to China’s share of 38%.
The exports from the sector are valued at around $37 billion, amounting to 13% of India’s total exports. The share of textiles in India’s total exports has fallen sharply—from a high of 25% a decade or so ago.
Problems faced by the Industry
To begin with, the government needs to move away from export-specific subsidy, which violates WTO norms, to focus on regional and cluster subsidies, technology up-gradation and skill development subsidies. Fibre neutrality is another aspect that will give a boost to the industry. In India, cotton and manmade fibres (MMF) have differential tax treatment.