Why is it that, despite having an abundance of the principal raw material in the form of cotton, a strong textile tradition, and armies of underemployed people in the countryside needing more productive work, India's garment industry is stuck in a stagnant loom?

The answer can only be deficiencies in policy and infrastructure - starting with the original stupidity of reserving garment production for the small-scale sector.

Equally bizarre, India is the world's second largest producer of raw cotton, but in some years exports up to 40 per cent of its production, mostly to China. Sometimes, these exports cause raw material costs to rise for the domestic industry. This is a repeat of that old story about exporting iron ore to China, which uses it to make steel that India then imports! Read More