China, Bangladesh, India, Pakistan, and other South Asian and East Asian countries are major exporters of knitwear products across the globe. Brands like Gap and Abercrombie and Fitch and major active wear brands such as Adidas and Nike continue to focus on research and development, design, logistics marketing and branding, and service to improve their position in the market.
These brands outsource their manufacturing to low-cost Asia Pacific countries such as China, Bangladesh, and India. Adidas manufactured only two per cent of its apparels in the US and only one per cent in Europe in 2017, outsourcing almost 97 per cent production to Asia Pacific. Similarly, Nike manufactures all its apparels through independent contract vendors.
India’s knitwear market is growing with a spike in in the number of organised knitwear retailers selling branded knitwear products. Demand for branded knitwear is also rising in the Middle East. With approximately 62 per cent of its population being young and middle-aged, the region imports knitwear products worth 3.5 billion dollars annually.
There is growing demand for cotton knitwear products in Brazil and other South American countries. Almost half of the knitwear imports by Brazil are from China.