Import/Export | News & Insights

A Rising Industry with Growing Export Potential

Published: March 14, 2024

The textile industry has long been a significant contributor to global trade, and within this industry, technical textiles have emerged as a highly sought-after segment. Technical textiles serve functional purposes and are widely used in various sectors, such as agriculture, construction, sports apparel, and healthcare.

Driven by safety and health concerns and the growing preference for sustainable and eco-friendly products, the demand for technical textiles has increased. These textiles are categorised into 12 major segments: Agrotech, Buildtech, Indutech, and Sporttech.

According to recent statistics, global technical textiles exports grew at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 3.2% from 2012 to 2022. Categories like fibre, yarn, fabrics, apparel, and made-ups witnessed steady growth during this period, ranging from 1.8% to 4.5%. Leading markets for technical textiles include the US, EU, and Japan, while China, Germany, and the US dominate as the key exporters.

India, too, has made its mark in the technical textiles industry, with exports reaching US$2.5 billion in 2022-23, albeit with a slight decline compared to the previous year. However, in the current year (April to October 2023), exports have experienced a modest growth of 0.5%. The government has set an ambitious target of achieving US$10 billion in technical textiles exports by 2030.

Despite the positive growth trajectory, the sector faces several challenges. Lack of awareness and technical know-how, inadequate testing facilities, and non-availability of speciality fibres are among the hurdles hindering the growth of technical textile exports. To overcome these obstacles, the government plans to increase the number of Harmonized System (HS) codes for technical textiles and introduce more Standard Input Output Norms (SION) for these products.

The government has implemented various schemes to boost the industry, including the Production-Linked Incentive (PLI) scheme, which covers ten technical textiles products, and the National Technical Textiles Mission (NTTM) to establish India as a global leader. Additionally, with the allowance of 100% Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) through the automatic route and the inclusion of technical textiles products in schemes like Duty Drawback and the Remission of Duties and Taxes on Exported Products (RODTEP), the government is providing support to increase exports.

The future looks promising for the technical textiles industry, driven by rising living standards, changing consumer preferences, and governmental support. With abundant raw materials, increasing awareness among manufacturers, and a growing population, India is poised to unlock its true potential in the global technical textiles market.

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