India achieves phenomenal growth in non-wovens: Ian Butler

LUBBOCK, USA (Commodity Online): India has achieved remarkable growth of 367% in textile non-wovens in the past five years, according to Ian Butler, Director of Market Research of the USA-based Association of the Nonwoven Fabrics Industry (INDA). In a telephonic interview Ian Butler said India has witnessed phenomenal growth in the nonwoven sector in recent past. This sector is expected to grow at a rapid rate. Butler estimates India’s nonwoven production to be about 125,000 to 140,000 metric tons. He stated although he has not undertaken the market research, through sources he estimates India’s production to be in the above range.

Mr. Butler estimates the Chinese nonwoven production to be about 1.1 to 1.2 million metric tons. He said the number quoted by China based nonwoven related associations which is about 1.6 million metric tons is an overestimate. And, he indicated the growth rate of 12-14% per annum is unsustainable. He said, the production will come down as the industry matures. Most of the production in China is in the spunbond sector and feeds the packtech segment. According to Butler, China produces shopping bags in billions. His observation has been that when the conventional apparel industry is undergoing a slump, the labor is redirected to develop converted products like shopping bags resulting in huge production.

According to Mr. Butler, India’s current status is where China was twenty years ago. Ian Butler while speaking at a Texas Tech University organized conference in Coimbatore, India in 2006 estimated India’s production then at 30,000 metric tons. Latest estimate is 140,000 metric tons which amounts to a 367 percent increase in growth in 5 years. A 2008 estimate by Texas Tech University pegged India’s technical textiles sector’s annual growth rate to be 13%. A Government of India sponsored survey estimates the growth of this sector to be 11%.

Source: Commodity In Line

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