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Why cotton textile industries rapidly expanded in Mumbai?

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  • Last Updated : 03 Jul, 2022
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Cotton is a delicate, fleecy staple fiber that fills in a boll, or defensive case, around the seeds of the cotton plants of the class Gossypium in the mallow family Malvaceae. The plant is a bush native to tropical and subtropical areas all over the planet, including the America, Africa, Egypt and India.

Cotton Textile Mills

The cotton textile industry is one of the absolute first businesses set up during British rule in India. The heat and humidity of India is reasonable for the farming of cotton and because of the popularity for cotton all around the world the cotton textile mills in India are developing at a quick speed and are situated in the Western territories of India especially Mumbai.

Reasons for growth of Cotton textile industries in Mumbai

  • The cotton textile industry is an Agro-based Industry as raw cotton is cultivated in the fields by Indian farmers. However, the cotton textile industry is definitely not a new enterprise, rather it was begun by the Britishers in India in the 19th century.
  • In 1854, the first successful Cotton textile mill “Bombay Spinning and Weaving Company “was established by Britishers in Mumbai which was earlier known as Bombay.
  • The tropical climate, moist and coastal humid environment suitable for cultivating cotton as it is a primary raw material for the cotton industry made the growth of Cotton textile industries in Mumbai and other areas of Maharashtra.
  • The other important factors for the rapid expansion of Cotton mills in Mumbai are the availability of skilled and semi-skilled low-cost labour due to dense population, easy mode of transportation.
  • Availability of surplus amount of water for bleaching and dyeing.
  • Because of positive humid environment cotton industry began prospering in the provinces of Gujarat and Maharashtra.
  • Due to the Mumbai port, the cotton textile exports were easy to transport and had a good market demand in the western countries which also helped in even export of cotton textile fabrics and import of machinery was made easy.
  • Due to Well developed roads and railway networks, accessible to markets was easy and time saving.
  • Easy availability of suitable cultivation land, flat terrains and the favorable climate conditions for weaving and spinning was also ideal.
  • Due to Mumbai port, the cotton textile exports increased rapidly due to demand in western world as India was well known for its quality exports.
  • USA, United Kingdom, France, and some African countries are our major destinations of exports from Mumbai port.
  • During the British colonial rule, based on the above factors Mumbai was used to be known as Manchester of India due to set up of cotton mills by British people.
  • Currently Ahmedabad in Gujarat is known as Manchester of India.

Hence these are the most important factors that have facilitated the Rapid Expansion of Cotton Textile industries in Mumbai.

Key Factors in Cotton industry growth in Mumbai

  1. Tropical climate, Flat terrains, favorable soil and coastal humid environment.
  2. Easy transportation by means of Sea, Road and Railway network.
  3. Availability of Skilled and semi-skilled low cost labour.
  4. Easy availability of land and raw materials.

Sample Questions

Question 1: What are the reasons for  Mumbai becoming famous in cotton textile industries?


  • Mumbai has Humid and warm climatic conditions which is favourable for growing Cotton. 
  • Easy availability of Raw materials and Skilled Labour.
  •  Easy Imports and exports due to the Mumbai Port.

Question 2: Why was the first Cotton Textile Industry set up in Mumbai?


Mumbai was a significant financial market place with ports facilitating the exports of raw cotton from countries like China and United Kingdom. It is also situated near cotton cultivating areas. So, therefore the first Cotton mill was set up in Mumbai.

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