India’s powerloom sector can double its earnings in the next five years, if it can focus on value addition, modernisation, and productivity gains, said SSM Mathivanan, President, Tamilnadu Powerloom Federation Limited.
Mathivanan said the industry needs to embrace modernisation – and go for automatic looms to produce wider-width fabrics which are in high demand. With the existing powerlooms, India can produce fabrics only of 48 inches width. But automatic powerlooms can produce fabrics of 63 inches that are sold for a premium.
Talking about productivity, he pointed out that China is the number one producer of fabrics and India comes sixth, despite India having more machines than China. “We have about 50 lakh handlooms, over 25 lakh powerlooms, and nearly 2 lakh automatic looms.
But we are unable to increase the output value, mainly because our productivity is low. One powerloom can produce 50 meters of fabrics a day but we hardly produce 25 meters a day, he pointed out.