Rajasthan textile industry vilified for polluting the environment, the sector needed modernization and new technologies to keep alive the rich textile heritage and also build on the brand image. The state government has not only addressed those concerns but also given a very encouraging policy support unmatched anywhere in the country. The high conversion rate of investment proposals into textile projects is the result of the confidence the government generated among the investors, said Industries minister Gajendra Singh Khimsar.
The Rajastan government has signed investment proposals for 23 textile projects amounting to a little over Rs 7,000 crore and as of now, 18 of them have got off the ground, said a top official in the industry department. The textile industry that was pilloried for inflicting large-scale damage to environment appears to have emerged as the dark horse to become the top sector for clinching the highest conversion rate of investment proposals into projects.
As most of the investors have land already in their possession, they have started construction of the units. In some cases, machinery have been installed. In fact, companies like Nitin Spinners, RSWM, and Sudiva Spinners have actually started production, said L C Jain, additional director, industries .
Textiles sector, which provides direct and indirect jobs to nearly 7 lakh people and contributes 17% to the state's exports, has been accorded priority status. It is one of the very few sectors to enjoy interest subsidy of 5-7% given by the state government.
Other sweeteners like VAT exemption of 50% on purchase of raw material and 50% exemption of entry tax on capital goods are extended to the investors.
Availability of raw material for the textile industry also played its part. Rajasthan is today counted as one of the leading states for cotton production with an annual output of about 20 lakh bales. Similarly, 85% of the wool produced in the country is from Rajasthan.
The strong resource base required a policy boost to build on the vibrant textile heritage of the state. The seriousness shown by the investors in putting up projects indicates that the government has done something right, said an industry expert.
About a year ago, the major processing and printing hubs in the state stared at the dire consequence of shutting down due to the environmental degradation they created. Finding a solution was urgent to regain the investors' faith.
The printing and processing hubs such as Balotra, Jasoli, Pali and Sanganer now look at a different future, thanks to the textile ministry's integrated processing development scheme (IPDS) that provides grants for using environmentally friendly processing standards and technology.
The ministry has already approved Rs 115 crore for Balotra, Rs 20 crore for Jasoli, Rs 110 crore for Pali and Rs 150 crore for Sanganer.
Besides creating an identity for Bagru and Sanganer prints internationally, Rajasthan also boasts of being the largest producer of polyester viscose yarn and synthetic suiting material in the country. The new investments are expected to expand further the base of the industry in the country.
Under the IPD scheme, the ministry of textiles gives 50% financial grant for setting up zero liquid discharge common effluent treatment plants, while 25% of the cost is contributed by the state. Out of the remaining 25%, 15% is provided by the units in the cluster and 10% as bank loan. All this has come as a huge morale booster for the industry and Resurgent Rajasthan has demonstrated the potential of the sector.
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