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Ginners in Pakistan want a ban on import of cotton and cotton yarn from India till the end of the cotton season and disposal of one million bales lying in ginneries as unsold stock. They want a bailout package. They also insist that regulatory duty, sales tax and customs duty on imports of cotton should not be waived and that these duties are essential for the survival of local farmers as well as ginners.

Their argument is that if duties are waived, that would be detrimental to local growers and ginners who have millions of bales lying in unsold stock. Ginners also want textile mills to clear their outstanding dues as early as possible. They want a national cotton policy to be formulated which would cover all aspects of the cotton trade, including fixing the support price and targets of production. The electricity tariff is another issue that bothers them.

Farmers in Pakistan say the textile sector is purchasing local cotton from them at throwaway rates but on the other hand importing cotton or yarn from countries like India at higher rates, which amounts to a great injustice. Pakistan has a target of reaching 20 million bales of cotton this season.

According to the International Cotton Association (ICA) leaders, in view of growing consumption of cotton in Bangladesh, the platform wants to provide a wide range of mediation and training support for trade associations and individual mills to ensure safe trading under ICA bylaws.

ICA officials say that the future of textile industry in Bangladesh is bright and the ICA is in Bangladesh to strengthen the bonds between the association and Bangladeshi spinning and textile sectors as the country is now the second largest cotton importer.

The ICA has training programs in Liverpool and they have visited Bangladesh several times and done training programs so that parties could know what are right and about the obligations. Rules are very important aspect here in Bangladesh because 100 per cent of cotton which is bought in Bangladesh is contracted under the ICA bylaws and rules, so the parties should better know under which rules and bylaws they buy a product.

ICA plays a vital role for Bangladesh textile sector and cotton worth over $2 billion is being imported to Bangladesh under ICA rules and bylaws. Bangladesh imports about four million bales of cotton per year.

Sources say, the Indian cloth industry reported a modest increase in revenues in the December 2015 quarter. Net sales of the industry grew by 2.4 per cent y-o-y during the period. The sluggish growth was attributed to a poor sales performance of a few large companies in the industry.

Out of the 54 company’s sample, 29 reported an increase in revenues. Net sales of 23 companies declined, while two companies failed to generate any sales. Aggregate net sales of the top 10 companies (accounting for three-fourth of the industry’s total sales) grew by 10.8 per cent. Raw material expenses of the industry dropped by 15.8 per cent in the December 2015 quarter.

Moreover, the industry liquidated inventory worth Rs.393.8 million during the quarter under review as compared to a pile-up of Rs.5.1 billion in the year-ago quarter. After adjusting for change-in-stock, operating expenses of the industry increased by 1.2 per cent. Nevertheless, this was still slower than the growth in sales. Consequently, operating profit of the industry increased by 12.3 per cent in the December 2015 quarter. Operating margin expanded by 110 basis points to 11.8 per cent.

On the post-operating front, interest expenses of the industry grew by 1.8 per cent and depreciation charges by 3.3 per cent, slower than the growth in operating profit. Resultantly, the industry reported a net profit worth to 0.2 per cent of the total income in the December 2015 quarter. The industry had reported losses equivalent to 0.1 per cent in the year-ago quarter.

According to the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) in its first formal forecasts for next season, Cotton demand in China, the top consumer of the fiber, will grow in 2016-17 by 1m bales to 33.0 million bales. This predicted increase would be the first since 2009-10, when it reached a record 50.0 million bales, before China's policy of providing guaranteed and elevated values for growers, in keeping domestic prices far above international ones, rendered its mills uncompetitive.

Consumption increase will be spurred by a willingness by China to accept lower bids for cotton stockpiled during its programme of guaranteed prices, after auctions last year failed to attract significant buying. The prospect of extra supplies hitting the market bode ill for prices, which will average 67 cents a pound next season, as measured by the Cotlook A index of physical values, 2 cents below the average price expected for 2015-16.

According to USDA, ‘weak’ world demand growth, and low prices of man-made fibers such as polyester, besides ‘the pressure of China's surplus disposal policies,’ are reasons for undermining cotton price prospects.

Velocity Apparelz is ramping up its presence in Africa by opening a plant in Ethiopia. Velocity is the manufacturing arm of Dubai’s Vogue International. It has factories in United Arab Emirates and Egypt. The company specialises in denim and sources material from China, India, Pakistan, Turkey and Italy. The Ethiopia plant, located on a campus measuring just under a square mile, will produce jeans and knit garments. The entire factory is fully automated, set up on conveyor systems, powered by wind and lit by LED bulbs, and has its own water treatment facilities on-site. Other sustainable practices include waterless washing, sublimation fabric printing and laser-blast technology. The factory is presented as one of the most advanced in the world.

The company sees Africa as the next manufacturing base of the world. It has developed a campus-based structure which houses all the workers and in time will have facilities like entertainment, schools and hospitals. Velocity hopes to ultimately provide jobs to around 10,000 people in Ethiopia.

The parent company Vogue opened in 1988 and since then has been committed to sustainable manufacturing. The Vogue group of companies is a fully integrated one-stop shop design and garment manufacturing facility offering design, production, logistics and its own retail brands.

Knitwear manufacturers in Tirupur feel the Northeast presents great opportunities. They plan to go through the e-commerce route. This will help knitwear manufacturers immensely as it drastically cuts the cost of marketing. Knowledge of English is high in the region and some of the states have English as the official language. People are internet savvy.

Markets in the Northeast demand apparels made of heavy GSM (grams per square meter) fabrics that can withstand the cool climates in states such as Meghalaya, Manipur, Tripura and Arunachal Pradesh. Fashion garments are popular among youngsters here.

The region is emerging as a magnet for upscale apparel and accessories labels. Makers of sports and fashion wear, branded jewelry chains and retailers are heading to the north-east to open their first stores or expand their presence. Rapid economic growth in recent years has increased the purchasing power of consumers in the region. This is a brand-conscious and fashion-forward market. Pockets of the north-east mirror the consumer behavior of high-income pockets of suburban Delhi and Mumbai.

The region’s traditional ethnic clothes represent the true spirit of India. However, supply chain and logistics-related issues loom as potential challenges and scaling up may be a challenge given the limited density of population of cities in the region.

Luxury lingerie brand Marie Jo has been chosen the top award at the first ever Belgian Fashion Awards. The label beat 23 premium brands to be voted ‘Fashion Brand of the Year’ by the Belgian public. Discussing the win, brand design Manger Lieve Vermeire said: “Being able to take this award home with us is recognition of our passion and proof that we can count on a host of loyal fans. Marie Jo women are certainly power women that make their voice heard.”

Van de Velde CEO Erwin van Laethem noted, “Resolutely choosing what consumers want, with a product that looks fantastic, but at the same time is also comfortable and fits perfectly is a proven recipe for success. I would like to give a big thanks to all Marie Jo fans for their support and I dedicate this award to them. We are grateful to have the opportunity to empower them with our lingerie day after day.”

Belgian lingerie manufacturer Van de Velde launched Marie Jo in 1981 to create a perfect-fit, fashion-forward lingerie which empowers women. The brand is known for its discreet luxury approach and attention to quality and craft. The Belgian Fashion Awards ceremony took place in Antwerp on November 16 as a part of Fashion Talks, an industry conference organised by the Flanders District of Creativity, a non-profit organisation established by the Flemish government.

Jointly developed with ProLH GTZ, Jababeka Industrial Estate is the first modern Indonesian eco-industrial estate under a technical cooperation program. It is collaboratively established by Indonesia's Ministry of Environment and the Republic of Germany is planning to turn Kendal in Central Java into a ‘fashion city.’

As Jababeka president and director S D Darmono says his company would build a textile complex in the small city to provide space for textile and garment manufacturers to develop their businesses. There will be garment factories that will be close to textile factories, a trade center and design training centers at the textile complex, he revealed after a closed-door meeting with Industry Minister Saleh Husin.

While Bandung, West Java, has long been known as one of the country’s garment and textile hubs, in the near future Kendal in Central Java may feature prominently on the fashion map. Known as a ‘City of Santri’ (Islamic students) for its ubiquitous Islamic boarding schools, Kendal may be transformed into a fashion city integrating all aspects of the textile and garment industry as a result of the plan.

As per the plan, a bonded warehouse is also expected to be set up near the complex, functioning as a location to stockpile raw materials for garment manufacturing.

Fashion segment for high-end Russian products have skyrocketed despite the fact that the mid-market sector has been stagnating. There is an ever expanding chasm between normal Russian consumer and the super-rich which has seen approximately 70 per cent of Russians dramatically reducing their garment and footwear spending since 2016, with 12 per cent said to have abandoned the thought of buying new clothes in the near future. This is reflected in the fact that there has been no major shopping mall which has opened in Moscow or St Petersburg during the above mention period, while footfall in existing malls have dropped; besides about half of all Russian fashion retailers have closed some of their stores in the past year (about 1,230 outlets countrywide).

Sales in Russia’s luxury branded clothing sector have seen sustained growth. Chanel, for one, the Paris-headquartered fashion group, reported a 15 per cent rise in sales in Russian outlets; Prada and Burberry have seen similar success, with Burberry  recording growth of 200 per cent in value terms over the past 12 months. Analysts says this is largely due to the fact that Russia's super-rich shoppers have cash to spend and also the huge number of Chinese tourists’ inflows into the country who have an irresistible urge to spend. In terms of market break-up, imports still predominate with 78 per cent of all items in the fashion sector currently sourced from abroad; further successful promotional activity, sales and discounts remain the key drivers in the sector. During 2015-2016, 44 multinational fashion retail chains withdrew from Russia, while only 11 forayed into the country. However, those companies that have weathered the storm are now well-positioned to occupy the niche abandoned by the withdrawing multinationals.

In September the Russian Ministry of Industry and Trade announced that the Eurasian Economic Commission had withdrawn import duties on all knitwear fibres and most viscose fibres. The move was intended to stimulate local production of knitwear and viscose fibre items, including clothing, underwear, hosiery and sportswear. Overall, it is expected that cutting the payable duty will lead to the prices of the related items falling by as much as 10 per cent.

"EU’s sales to the US recorded a noticeable growth rate (+16 per cent), thanks to a favorable exchange rate. Among the EU top 10 customers, moderate expansion was recorded by Hong Kong and China On the contrary, exports to Russia (-27 per cent) and Ukraine (-1 per cent) slipped back again, as economy remains depressed in these markets. Clothing exports to its main consumers indicated a higher growth rates than for textiles."


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According to a statement of CITH, Textile and Clothing Information Centre, the EU textile and clothing exporters succeeded in gaining further market shares in third countries (+3.6 per cent). According to CITH, the European Union’s (EU’s) imports picked up by +9.6 per cent in value terms, due to sharp increases from Asian countries. On the contrary, imports from the Mediterranean area (Turkey, Egypt, Morocco, and Tunisia) achieved a modest growth or even decreased over the period. According to CITH, 2015 evolution impacted the overall trade balance of the EU-28 whose deficit deteriorated further in value, by + 14 per cent (+29 per cent for textiles and +13 per cent for clothing.

EU’s sales moves north


EU’s sales to the US recorded a noticeable growth rate (+16 per cent), thanks to a favorable exchange rate. Among the EU top 10 customers, moderate expansion was recorded by Hong Kong and China On the contrary, exports to Russia (-27 per cent) and Ukraine (-1 per cent) slipped back again, as economy remains depressed in these markets. Clothing exports to its main consumers indicated a higher growth rates than for textiles. Data shows a noticeable growth in the US, Hong Kong, South Korea, Canada and China (with rates between +19 per cent and +22 per cent), which made the US the second largest EU customer and China the 6th largest customer. Exports to the Saudi Arabian and Mexican markets also experienced a significant growth (+17 per cent and +15 per cent). Russia and Ukraine on the other hand declined, following the political turmoil.

Textile imports grows

As far as the textile imports coming from EU top 20 suppliers, they were all up, except from Egypt, Thailand and Australia. With a 16 per cent growth, the US witnessed the highest growth among the main suppliers, followed by China, Pakistan and Vietnam, with 11 per cent. Meanwhile, Morocco and New Zealand recorded 17 per cent and 39 per cent increase at the bottom of the ranking. Double digit growth recorded from most Asian countries as far as clothing imports are concerned. China, the top supplier recorded a 6 per cent increase, with 30 billion of clothing articles sold to the EU market whereas Bangladesh recorded a 24 per cent increase recording the second place. Meanwhile, strong imports’ upturns were also observed from Cambodia (31 per cent), Vietnam (26 per cent), Hong Kong (25 per cent) and the US (26 per cent). Myanmar is now ranking 17th in the top-20 EU’s clothing suppliers with a 79 per cent increase.

Since 1981, CITH, the Textile and Clothing Information Centre, provides statistical information on trade in textile and clothing. The basic data are collected by Eurostat from national customs and subsequently treated by the CITH. The organization can provide tailor-made reports on customers’ request, which can be updated on a regular basis, or adapted to a specific format. Statistical information covers EU goods’ flows (by products or CN/HS codes), trade balance, export and import average unit prices and major EU exporters and importers.


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