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Indian textile machinery sector flounders

Dependence on borrowed technology, lack of continuous and sustained R&D initiatives have kept India’s domestic textile machinery far behind. For financial year 2014-15, the production value of mainstream textile machinery, accessories, spares and consumables improved only by three per cent. The industry has since struggled to sustain momentum, and is on a flat growth path despite the continuation of capex-inducing concessional subsidy based schemes such as TUFS.

The lackluster performance after financial year 2014 was mainly due to the hit taken by the overall synthetic filament yarn industry, which accounts for 10 per cent of all textile machinery output. In addition, the synthetic and man-made fiber sector is plagued with overcapacity situations. This excess capacity situation, owing mainly to the slowdown in the demand for synthetic textiles, has impacted investments and thus take-off for textile machinery, despite availability of concessional schemes to boost capex via new projects. The scenario is not likely to change in the near future due to continued weak demand for textiles.

The only ray of hope is the successful run enjoyed by the cotton and spun yarn spinning mill machinery. This has been solely due to the capability of the spinning machinery segment to meet demand. Favorable and special textile policies have played a pivotal role in mobilising new investment in cotton or spun yarn mill projects. As a result, the domestic production of cotton or yarn spinning machinery has become the strongest link in the machinery value chain, accounting for almost 50 per cent of textile machinery production.