The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs, chaired by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, has given its approval to set up a National Technical Textiles Mission with a total outlay of Rs 1,480 crore (US$ 211.76 million), with a view to position the country as a global leader in Technical Textiles. The Mission would have a four year implementation period from FY 2020-21 to 2023-24.
Technical Textiles are futuristic and nice segment of textiles, which are used for various applications ranging from agriculture, roads, railway tracks, sportswear, health on one end to bullet proof jacket, fireproof jackets, high altitude combat gear and space applications on other end of spectrum.
- The Mission will have four components:
- 1. Component -l (Research, Innovation and Development) with outlay of Rs 1000 crore (US$ 143.08 million). This component will promote both (i) fundamental research at fibre level aiming at path breaking technological products in Carbon Fibre, Aramid Fibre, Nylon Fibre, and Composites and (ii) application based research in geo-textiles, agro-textiles, medical textiles, mobile textiles and sports textiles and development of biodegradable technical textiles.
The fundamental research activities will be based on 'pooled resource' method and will be conducted in various Centre for Scientific & Industrial Research (CSIR) laboratories, Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) and other scientific/industrial/academic laboratories of repute. Application based research will be conducted in CSIR, IIT, Research Design & Standards Organisation (RDSO) of Indian Railways, Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR), Defence Research & Development Organisation (DRDO), National Aeronautical Laboratory (NAL), Indian Road Research Institute (IRRI) and other such reputed laboratories.
- 2. Component -II (Promotion and Market Development)
Indian Technical Textiles segment is estimated at US$ 16 Billion which is approximately 6 per cent of the US$ 250 billion global technical textiles market. The penetration level of technical textiles is low in India varying between 5-10 per cent against the level of 30-70 per cent in developed countries. The Mission will aim at average growth rate of 15-20 per cent per annum taking the level of domestic market size to US$ 40-50 billion by the year 2024; through market development, market promotion, international technical collaborations, investment promotions and 'Make in India' initiatives.
- 3. Component - III (Export Promotion)
The component aims at export promotion of technical textiles enhancing from the current annual value of approximately Rs 14,000 crore (US$ 2 billion) to Rs 20,000 crore (US$ 2.86 billion) by 2021-22 and ensuring 10 per cent average growth in exports per year up to 2023-24. An Export Promotion Council for Technical Textiles will be set up for effective coordination and promotion activities in the segment.
- 4. Component- IV (Education, Training, Skill Development)
Education, skill development and adequacy of human resources in the country is not adequate to meet the technologically challenging and fast-growing technical textiles segment. The Mission will promote technical education at higher engineering and technology levels related to technical textiles and its application areas covering engineering, medical, agriculture, aquaculture and dairy segments. Skill development will be promoted, and adequate pool of highly skilled manpower resources will be created for meeting the need of relatively sophisticated technical textiles manufacturing units.
- The Mission will focus on usage of technical textiles in various flagship missions, programmes of the country including strategic sectors. The use of technical textiles in agriculture, aquaculture, dairy, poultry, etc. Jal Jivan Mission; Swachch Bharat Mission; Ayushman Bharat will bring an overall improvement in cost economy, water and soil conservation, better agricultural productivity and higher income to farmers per acre of land holding in addition to promotion of manufacturing and exports activities in India. The use of geo-textiles in highways, railways and ports will result in robust infrastructure, reduced maintenance cost and higher life cycle of the infrastructure assets.
- Promotion of innovation amongst young engineering /technology/ science standards and graduates will be taken up by the Mission; along with creation of innovation and incubation centres and promotion of 'start-up' and Ventures'. The research output will be reposited with a ‘Trust’ with the Government for easy and assessable proliferation of the knowledge thus gained through research innovation and development activities.
- A sub-component of the research will focus on development of biodegradable technical textiles materials, particularly for agro-textiles, geo-textiles and medical textiles. It will also develop suitable equipment for environmentally sustainable disposal of used technical textiles, with emphasis on safe disposal of medical and hygiene wastes.
- There is another important sub-component in the research activity aiming at development of indigenous machineries and process equipment for technical textiles, in order to promote 'Make in India' and enable competitiveness of the industry by way of reduced capital costs.
- A Mission Directorate in the Ministry of Textiles headed by an eminent expert in the related field will be made operational. The Mission Directorate will not have any permanent employment and there will be no creation of building infrastructure for the Mission purpose. The Mission will move into sunset phase after four years period.
Background of Technical Textiles:
- Technical textiles are textiles materials and products manufactured primarily for technical performance and functional properties rather than aesthetic characteristics. Technical Textiles products are divided into 12 broad categories (Agrotech, Buildtech, Clothtech, Geotech, Hometech, Indutech, Mobiltech, Meditech, Protech, Sportstech, Oekotech, Packtech) depending upon their application areas.
- India shares nearly 6 per cent of world market size of US$ 250 billion. However, the annual average growth of the segment is 12 per cent, as compared to 4 per cent world average growth.
- Penetration level of technical textiles is low in India at 5-10 per cent, against 30-70 per cent in advanced countries. The Mission aims at improving penetration level of technical textiles in the country.