||This paper assesses the relative strengths and weaknesses of India's public and private maize seed industries and examines future options for maize seed industry policies. By 1992, nearly as many maize researchers worked for private seed companies as for public breeding programs – a significant departure from earlier years, when public organizations conducted virtually all maize research in India. Private companies have concentrated almost exclusively on developing hybrids, which perform best in the favorable environments where most commercial maize production takes place, whereas public breeding programs have produced a somewhat wider range of materials, including a number of open-pollinating varieties (OPVs) developed specifically for environments where maize production potential is low. Seed production in the public sector and especially in the private sector appears to be reasonably efficient, judging by the level of reported seed production costs. However, seed certification procedures are sometimes ineffective, and a significant proportion of the maize seed produced in India escapes rigorous quality controls. Growth in sales of proprietary hybrids produced by private companies has been much more rapid than growth in sales of public OPVs and hybrids, indicating that private companies deliver seed to farmers more effectively than public agencies. Government involvement in seed production and distribution seems destined to decrease, with responsibility for those functions gradually shifting to the private sector. Even so, private companies will require continuing support from the public sector. There will always be a need for the public sector to participate in the maize seed industry, particularly in supporting basic germplasm improvement research and research targeted at marginal production environments.