The textile and apparel industry in India is worth some $110 billion, and is the nation’s second largest employer, after agriculture, providing direct employment to more than 45 million people and indirect employment to another 60 million.
All this is set to soar by 2025, according to Indian Prime Minister Modi, who addressed attendees this week at the Textiles India 2017, a three-day event, which saw the PM map out a series of targets for India’s textile industry.
Modi said that the domestic market for apparel and lifestyle products is worth $85 billion and is expected to grow to $160 billion by 2025, boasted by increased spending from wealthier Indians.
“This growth will be driven by the rising middle class,” he said.
Modi also hailed his nation’s liberated direct investment policies, allowing international firms to inject money into the burgeoning sector.
“We have one of the most liberal investment policies for foreign investment in the textile and apparel sector,” said Modi.
“We allow 100% foreign direct investment through automatic route in the textile and apparel sector. I think the time has now come for us to concentrate on textile exports in a big way,” he added.
Moreover, the textile industry is expected to create about 35 million more jobs by 2024-25, with exports rising from $39 billion to $300 billion by that time, said Modi.
India is the world’s second-largest exporter of textiles, after China. Apparel exports accounted for an estimated $17 billion, making India the sixth-largest exporter of garments in the world.