After reading this article you will learn about the size of units in important industries of India:- 1. Cotton Textiles Industry 2. Jute Industry 3. Cement Industry 4. Paper Industry 5. Sugar Industry 6. Coal Industry 7. Iron and Steel Industry.

Cotton Textiles Industry:

A mill with not less than 1,000 looms and 35,000 spindles may be reckoned as an economic or optimum unit in Bombay. By this criterion 56 per cent of spinning and 82 per cent of weaving mills are ‘below’ the optimum scale.

Small-sized units are common in Kerala, Karnataka, Orissa and Bihar while mostly medium-sized units operate in U.P., M.P., Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra with the exception of Bombay City and Gujarat. Madras, Bombay, Nagpur and Kanpur have bigger units.

Jute Industry:

Due to international demand, jute mills were of large size with number of looms ranging from 500 to 1,400. After the war, due to managerial integration, medium-sized units have come into existence. Efforts are being made to eliminate uneconomic units in the industry facing problems of shortage of raw materials, high costs etc.

Cement Industry:


A factory with two kiln plants capable of producing about 40,000 tons of cement is regarded as optimum unit. In recent year due to centralisation of control and ownership cement units are growing in size. Majority of cement units under the control of Associated Cement Co. (A.C.C.) or A.C.C. and Dalmia Jain group have productive capacity of more than 70,000 to 2,00,000 tons. Smaller units with daily productive capacity of 250 tons are also being set up in some parts of the country.

Paper Industry:

A unit of 50 tons capacity per day (or 15,000 tons a year) is deemed as optimum size of a paper mill.

There were only 5 units complying with this standard. Well-organised units like Tataghur Paper Mills have productive capacity of 42,000 tons, while some units have low capacity of 1,200 tons. Big size units are located in Bengal, Bihar, Orissa while smaller units function in Karnataka, Gujarat and Bombay.

Availability of raw materials, cheap power, transportation facilities, etc. cause wide variation in the size of paper mills.

Sugar Industry:


A factory with 500 tons capacity is regarded as an economic unit. Majority of mills in U.P. and Bihar where sugarcane supply is abundant have capacities ranging from 700 to 1000 tons per day. Units in Punjab, Madras and Maharashtra have smaller size due to limited supply of sugarcane and its low sucrose content. The crushing capacity of the factories in India varies from 220 tons to 3,200 per day.

Coal Industry:

Natural and economic factors determine the size of coal units. Nature and extent of coal deposits in the area, thickness of the seams, depth at which coal occurs are the natural factors while the economic factors include methods of leasing out the mines, method of operating the mines, transportation facilities for shifting coal from the pitheads to consumption centres etc. Majority of coal mines in Bengal and Bihar are relatively small with a monthly output of about 1,000 tons.

But large-sized units contribute more to the coal output. Uneconomic units are being eliminated through amalgamation. Now most of the coal-mines are in the public sector.

Iron and Steel Industry:

The size of the unit in iron and steel industry is governed by the availability of iron ore, coal, etc. proximity of markets, labour supply, financial resources, managerial competence etc. Now state has undertaken the responsibility of establishing new steel factories. Essential viability is determined by large size in iron and steel.


The Tata, Indian Iron, Mysore Iron and Steel, Bhilai, Rourkela and Durgapur are giant units. Besides, there are small units manufacturing special steel goods, re-rolling mills etc.