A leading Indian textile body said that the Government must put a package of reforms into place if it wants the industry to meet the targets set by the National Textile Policy.

The Indian Spinners Association has called for several measures to be put in place, primarily a scheme to scrap old and obsolete spindles and looms. It pointed out that the Chinese Government is to spend $174m over three years in a bid to eliminate 10 million spindles. The body estimates that there are between 11 and 13 million out of date spindles in India.

It said that units operating obsolete looms and spindles were flooding the market with substandard goods and were undercutting other manufacturers, leading to "mindless" price cuts.

Other reforms that have been demanded include a reduction in excise duty on blended and spun synthetic yarns, removal of duty exemption for the small scale sector and the withdrawal of anti-dumping duty on acrylic yarn.

The association said that duty reduction on blended and synthetic fabrics was essential if the Government's desire to promote a multi-fibre approach, as envisaged in the new textile policy, was to be realised.

Mr R.L.Toshniwal, president of the association, also asked for an expansion in the scope of the Technology Upgradation Fund for the textile industry to cover investments on captive power generation units.