The global technical textile market is growing along with new innovations and developments. While a large part of the demand comes from developed countries, the increasing industrialisation and development of emerging countries is driving the growth of the overall market. The United States is the largest market for consumption of technical textile products, accounting for a share of 23 per cent followed by western Europe, China and Japan with a share of 22 per cent, 13 per cent and 7 per cent respectively.
In terms of product segments, clothtech, packtech and agrotech have the largest share of global technical textiles market. Nonwoven, composites, fibres and meditech segments had a significant share of about 75 per cent in the global technical textiles market, but the rapid growth of automobile industry in market and growing acceptance of geotextiles is expected to drive the growth of mobiltech and geotech segments.
According to a knowledge paper revealed by Wazir Advisors at Technotex 2016, “Indian market for technical textiles is projected to be Rs 92,499 crore in 2015-16, growing at a CAGR of around 11.8 per cent. Packtech is the largest segment with 42 per cent share of the market, followed by indutech, mobiltech and hometech. India’s technical textiles market size accounts for 4 per cent share in the world’s market. Technical textiles constitutes of 51 high growth potential products which accounts for 23 per cent of the total technical textile industry in 2012-13, known as high growth potential technical textiles. The total high growth potential technical textile market in India is estimated to be Rs 14,830 crore for 2012-13 and is expected to grow at 16 per cent till 2015-16. The overall technical textile market size is expected to reach Rs 1,16,217 crore till 2017-18. India exported technical textile products worth $1.7 billion in 2014-15 with a CAGR of 16 per cent since 2007-08. India mainly exports commodity products which are not very R&D intensive. Indutech and packtech are the largest exported segments with a share of 44 per cent and 30 per cent respectively. The imports is mainly driven by indutech segment accounting for 83 per cent of the total imports of technical textiles. Several international companies have already entered the Indian market and more investments are expected in future.”
Dr Kavita Gupta, Textile Commissioner, Ministry of Textiles, Government of India stated that without technical textiles, even the security and defence of the country will be almost impossible. She compared the technical textiles industry from Germany to India. She adds, “The total contribution of technical textiles in Germany is as high as 70 per cent, but in India it is a mere 11 per cent. Even the awareness of using technical textiles in India is very limited.”
“Geo textiles is directly related towards the growth of the country. If we use geo textiles, there will be no problems of potholes in India,” she adds. The government will be providing Rs 4,027 crore for the development of geo textiles in the Northeastern regions of the country. “Northeast is selected as it is environmentally fragile and a number of road projects have been taken up lately,” she added.
Gujarat: Leading from the front
Contributing over 25 per cent at Rs 20,000 crore, Gujarat is quickly emerging hub for the technical textiles sector. With the Rs 75,000 crore sector expected to grow to over Rs one lakh crore by next fiscal, share of Gujarat is also set to propel in near future. Mamta Verma, Industries Commissioner, Government of Gujarat, said, “India is the largest producer of cotton, and Gujarat accounts for 33 per cent share in cotton. Gujarat has always been very strong in technical textiles too. It is also the leading state in technical textiles manufacturing, having a market share of about 25 per cent.” She adds, We aspire the capture 50 per cent market share in technical textiles.”
Technotex: A soaring success
Speaking during the inauguration of Technotex 2016 event at Mumbai, Devendra Fadnavis, Chief Minister of Maharashtra, said, “I congratulate the government and the industry on the fifth edition of Technotex, an indigenous initiative taken for the growth of technical textiles in the country. The sector has tremendous potential for generating employment opportunities and is consistently being looked upon for the future growth of the country. While Government has taken up concrete initiatives in the arena, the industry players also need to bring in large-scale innovations.”
He concludes further, Maharashtra has had and will always actively participate in the initiatives taken up by the government for the further acceleration of the technical textiles in the country. The use of technical textiles is increasing considerably. Even in the construction industry, use of geo textiles will increase even further.
Santosh Kumar Gangwar, Minister of State for Textiles (Independent Charge), says “This platform has been an enabler for linkages, technology transfer, exchange of innovative ideas, joint ventures and showcase of what is happening around the globe. In India, the technical textile sector is still at its nascent stage but it has been recognised as the fastest growing segment of the textile sector by the Government and industry stakeholders alike. These functional textiles are used for their inherent performance enhancement properties in various field ranging from protective services, steel manufacturing, construction, agriculture, sports, nation security, food security, etc.”
He further added, “In India the growth rate of technical textiles sector is expected to be much higher. Based on past trends of growth and estimated end user segment growth, the Working Group on technical textiles for 12th FYP has projected the market size to Rs 1.58 lakh crore for the year 2016-17 with a growth rate of 20 per cent during 12th FYP. I am confident, when the global technical textile industry revisits our shores in the next edition of Technotex 2017 from May 4-6, 2017, Indian technical textile sector will be one of the most promising sector in the world.”
The exhibition and international conference Technotex India drew more than150 exhibitors, looking to showcase a varied collection of technical textiles from the various sub sectors of the technical textiles industry. With participation from nations like Korea, Switzerland, Japan, US, Germany, Belgium, Luxembourg, France, Russia, UK, Spain and many more, the event also witnessed the country pavilions of Taiwan and China. Gujarat and Karnataka participated as partner states. Technotex 2016 witnessed participation from states like Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Rajasthan, Bihar, Madhya Pradesh and others. Technotex 2016 also attracted participation from stakeholders in technical textile sector as well as major institutional buyers from army, navy, paramilitary forces, railways, border roads organisations, hospitals, construction companies, etc. A gateway to the technical textile arena, the event bridges the gap between the buyer and seller by facilitating B2B (business-to-business) and G2B (government-to-business) meetings.
Technotex 2017 will be held from May 4-6, 2017 at Bombay Exhibition Centre, Mumbai.
Technical textiles market in 2015-2020
Aesthetics is one of the most common features that consumers look for when choosing textiles and apparels. However, in many end-use industries, functionality takes precedence over aesthetics, and qualities, such as insulation, fire-resistance, flexibility, and durability are highly desired.
Technical textiles, a distinct set of textiles, which offer some of the above-mentioned properties are gaining traction in a wide range of end-use industries – from automotive and construction to sportswear and agriculture. The global technical textiles market was valued at nearly $155 billion in 2015. On back of strong demand, global revenues are expected to a total $162 billion by 2016-end. By 2020, the global technical textiles market is estimated to pull in $193 billion in revenues.
Types of technical textiles
On the basis of key-end use industries, technical textiles are broadly categorised as: agrotech, buildtech, hometech, indutech, sportech, packtech, mobiltech, meditech, clothtech, geotech, protech and oekotech. Among these, indutech, packtech and mobiltech are the largest segments on the basis of revenues. Indutech and packtech segments’ revenue were valued at $21.8 billion each in 2015, whereas mobiltech segment was valued at $20.7 billion.
Although segments like indutech, packtech and mobiltech are well-established, demand for novel technical textiles, such as oekotech, geotech and sportech will increase at the highest CAGR through 2020. Oekotech—used in environmental protection and recycling—are gaining traction globally owing to the growing focus on sustainable development. Oekotech segment is anticipated to increase at the highest CAGR and total $4 billion in revenues by 2020.
Geotech—used in geotechnical applications pertaining to rock, earth, etc.—are used in the construction of roads and pavements, rail-track bed stabilisation, slope stabilisation, among others. Geotech segment is expected to increase at nearly 6 per cent CAGR through 2020.
Sportech, another quickly growing segment of technical textiles, finds applications in creating artificial turfs, fishing rods, golf clubs, parachute fabrics, etc. Demand for sportech technical textiles is expected to witness a CAGR of 5.5 per cent through 2020.
Nonwovens account for highest demand
On the basis of process type, technical textiles can be broadly categorised into nonwoven, composite, and others (knitting, braiding, and weaving). Among these, demand for nonwoven technical textiles is the highest, with this segment valued at over $80 billion in 2015. Nonwovens are expected to increase at the highest CAGR during the forecast period, and continue to hold the majority revenue share of the technical textiles market.
Asia Pacific: The largest market
Asia Pacific is the largest market for technical textiles, both in terms of production and consumption. Home to two of the world’s most populous regions, textile production has remained a key employment avenue in the region. High demand for technical textiles has prompted textile manufacturing companies to invest in R&D and increase the production of technical textiles. Technical textile market in the Asia Pacific region is expected to continue its dominance of the global market through 2020. In 2015, Asia Pacific accounted for nearly 40 per cent revenue share of the global technical textiles market. In addition to Asia Pacific, Western Europe and North America are the two other lucrative markets for technical textiles. Leading companies operating in the technical textiles market include Polymer Group Inc, Ahlstrom Corporation, DuPont Chemicals Company, Freudenberg & Co KG and TWE Group.
The information presented in this review is based on the report ‘Technical Textile Market: Global Industry Analysis and Opportunity Assessment 2015 - 2020’.