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European Commission moves ahead with circularity for textiles industry


The European Commission has published a guide marking the path for local textile industry's transition towards greater circularity. The document includes a consultation to gather the advice, observations and opinions of the local industry’s operators, with a response deadline of February 2.

The European Green Deal, the Circular Economy Action Plan (CEAP) and the Industrial Strategy have identified textiles as a priority sector in which the EU can pave the way towards a carbon neutral, circular economy, and announced an EU Strategy on textiles, indicated the EU Commission in the introduction.

The Commission’s goal is to draw up a comprehensive plan that will incorporate objectives and incentives to boost the European textile industry’s competitiveness. A plurality of stakeholders is expected to be involved, from manufacturers to buyers, researchers, consumer associations, investment funds and government bodies.

Future EU regulations will be aimed at the industry's weaknesses in terms of sustainable manufacturing, environmentally friendly products, and the use of polluting substances, while also attempting to boost the recycling of industrial waste and the use of recycled materials. Another goal is to identify horizontal actions along the value chain. Promoting greater transparency and respect of human rights are also listed among the EU initiative's objectives.

The document outlined some of the obstacles the initiative might come across, mentioning a number of studies on the European fashion industry and the role of sustainability within it. Among the obstacles, the remarkable complexity of the value chain which comprises 160,000 European companies employing 1.5 million people.