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EU Apparel Imports: Analysis of Top Sourcing Countries

26 May 2023, Mumbai  

Bangladesh Remains the Second Largest Apparel Import Source

Based on the Eurostat data, Bangladesh retains its position as the EU's second-largest apparel import source, accounting for 24.07% of the total import value during January-March 2023.

In terms of quantity, Bangladesh becomes the top sourcing country for the EU. In 2022, Bangladesh secured the highest position in terms of quantity. A separate email with a detailed analysis and datasheet will be sent.

Overall Decline in EU's Apparel Imports

The latest data reveals a 4.94% decline in EU apparel imports from the world during the mentioned period compared to the same period in 2022, amounting to a decline of 1.22 billion dollars.

In terms of quantity, EU's clothing import experienced a significant downturn of 12.64%, which is 136.88 million kilograms less than January-March 2022.

A decline in Import from China, Growth in Import from Bangladesh

EU's import from China, the second-largest apparel import source, declined by 17.80% in value terms during the mentioned period, while imports from Bangladesh showed a value-wise growth of 3.9%.

However, in terms of quantity, imports from Bangladesh declined by 3.67%, primarily due to inflated unit prices caused by increased raw materials, transportation, and production costs.

Positive Growth from Bangladesh, India, and Vietnam

Among the top ten apparel-sourcing countries, Bangladesh, India, and Vietnam demonstrated positive growth in EU's apparel imports. Import from Turkey, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, and Morocco, however, declined.

EU's imports from Turkey, the third-largest apparel import source, dropped significantly by 12.79%. Conversely, imports from India and Vietnam increased by 5.75% and 3.73% respectively in value terms. Volume-wise, all top countries experienced negative growth in EU's imports.


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Bangladesh's RMG Exports: Jan-Apr 2023

19 May 2023, Mumbai  

In 2023, Bangladesh's ready-made garment (RMG) exports from January to April amounted to US$15.58 billion. The European Union (EU 27) was the largest market, accounting for US$7.70 billion, but it experienced a slight decline of 1.55% compared to the same period in 2022.

Several EU member states, including Germany, Denmark, Poland, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Bulgaria, and Slovenia, saw negative year-on-year growth. Notably, exports to Germany decreased by 21.08%, while exports to France and Spain increased by 9.45% and 15.45%, respectively.

During this period, exports to the United States (U.S.A.) significantly dropped by 17.86% to US$2.67 billion, and exports to Canada decreased by 0.21% to US$455.48 million. However, exports to the United Kingdom (UK) showed positive growth, reaching US$1.79 billion with a year-on-year increase of 9.56%.

On a positive note, RMG exports to non-traditional markets expanded steadily, rising by 28.95% to US$2.96 billion, representing a 19.01% share of clothing exports.

Japan emerged as the top destination with exports amounting to US$566.99 million, and exports to other non-traditional markets like Australia, India, South Korea, and Turkey also grew. However, exports to Russia, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), and Chile declined.

As Asian markets present promising opportunities, exports to emerging markets such as Japan, India, and South Korea are on the rise. The Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) continues its efforts to explore non-traditional markets.

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BGMEA: Save Energy Now!

22 April 2023, Mumbai 

Energy is a crucial factor for our industry and one of the biggest challenges facing the world today.

What all you need to know

The ongoing geopolitical conflict has escalated the crisis to a historic level, resulting in the rise of energy prices, volatility in energy markets, and high inflation globally.

The labor department of the USA reported an annual inflation rate of 9.1% in June 2022, the highest since 1981, while the Euro zone hit a record annual inflation rate of 10% in January 2023. This has also impacted the global supply chain, resulting in imported inflation and rising production costs.

Over the past decade, the government has taken steps to improve the energy supply situation, but as the largest manufacturing sector in Bangladesh, we also have a role to play. We need to be strategic and responsive in dealing with energy issues to cope with the changing global scenario.

With climate change and net zero policy becoming priorities globally, we need to pay attention to our carbon footprint and reduce our dependency on fossil fuels.

Adopting the right in-house policies and practices to reduce energy consumption will not only lead to long-term sustainability but also give us a competitive edge by reducing costs.

Environmental sustainability is a key concern for brands and consumers, and it significantly influences consumer behavior. Global buyers are placing greater emphasis on renewable energy in their sourcing strategies.

While countries worldwide are adopting net zero carbon emission policies and environmental due diligence policies, investing in renewable energy is the only option for us.

We need to reduce our dependency on fossil fuels, particularly on imported energy. While this is not an easy task and cannot be accomplished overnight, change must start now. Many RMG factories have already invested in mega solar rooftop projects, and we should all have such a vision and action plan.

We also need to take a robust approach to optimize energy usage and efficiency. By adopting simple practices, methods, technologies, and processes, we can achieve significant positive results.

The BGMEA aims to bring knowledge and awareness in collaboration with strategic partners through our Center for Innovation, Efficiency, and OSH.

Using modern technologies like daylight simulation, sensor-based lights and faucets, inverter-enabled machines, energy star-rated appliances, and metering are some of the low-cost yet effective ways to reduce energy consumption. We also need to upgrade machinery to be more energy-efficient, including boilers, and adopt cogeneration and heat recovery systems where appropriate.

Before concluding, please note that we will be on vacation for a few days, so please ensure that electrical switches are turned off, and energy-intensive installations are in safe mode. This is important for our safety and to avoid wastage and unnecessary costs.


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Renewed Partnership: Removing Ocean Trash

19 May 2023, Mumbai  

4ocean and U.S. Polo Assn. are renewing their commitment to combat the ocean plastic crisis through a global sustainability partnership.

Their shared objective is to remove 150,000 pounds of trash from the world's oceans, building on their previous success of eliminating 60,000 pounds of plastic.

The partnership, which began in 2021 and will continue until 2024, highlights U.S. Polo Assn.'s proactive stance towards sustainability and aligns with their broader initiative, USPA Life, aimed at minimizing their environmental impact.

The collaboration extends beyond direct clean-up efforts, with 4ocean's involvement as the Official Sustainability Partner at prominent events like the U.S. Open Polo Championship Final, raising awareness among millions of spectators and sports enthusiasts.

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US PoloAssn

UNIQLO's new store prototype

20 April 2023, Mumbai 

UNIQLO has unveiled its new prototype store, the UNIQLO Maebashi Minami IC Store, in Gunma Prefecture, Japan.

What all you need to know

The store features innovative design elements and a new roadside store concept incorporating energy-saving features and a range of lifestyle services, including a florist shop, café, and UNIQLO's repair, reuse, recycle, and remake service.

The new store is part of the company's commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 90% by 2030 and will serve as a prototype for new roadside stores globally. UNIQLO's Group Executive Officer, Masahiro Endo, hopes the store will appeal to customers and bring them together.

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GTB June 2023

15 May 2023, Mumbai 

Garment Technolgy Bangladesh (GTB) 2023

Dates: June 8-10th 2023

Venue: GTB at GEC Convention Hall, GEC, More, Chittagong, Bangladesh 

Theme: A focused technology trade show for the RMG sector.

A prime marketing opportunity.

GTB - Chattogram Edition offers an exceptional marketing opportunity to showcase your products and services in the thriving hub of the country's second-largest Ready-Made Garments (RMG) production center.

With three successful editions already completed, GTB - Chattogram Edition has established itself as an ideal platform for technology and service providers to present their offerings to key decision-makers in the Chattogram market.

In recent months, the production capacity in existing factories in Chattogram has been expanding significantly. Moreover, due to its close proximity to the port, Chattogram has become the preferred location for new factories established by overseas companies.

The region is experiencing rapid growth, particularly in the Special Economic Zones created in and around Chattogram, further enhancing the marketing prospects for participants.

The exhibitor product profile at GTB - Chattogram Edition includes a diverse range of offerings such as Automation Systems, Machinery & Accessories, Boilers, CAD/CAM/CIM Systems, Chemicals & Dyes, Computer Software, Creasing, Cutting & Laying Machinery, Embroidery & Quilting Machinery, and Fastening Machines.

These products cater to the evolving needs of the industry and represent cutting-edge solutions for businesses operating in the RMG sector.

By participating in GTB - Chattogram Edition, you will gain access to a targeted audience consisting of influential decision-makers actively seeking innovative products and services.

This event serves as a springboard for establishing valuable connections, generating leads, and expanding your business opportunities in the Chattogram market.

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EU's Jan-Feb 2023 Clothing Imports

03 May 2023, Mumbai 

EUROSTAT has released data on EU clothing imports for January-February 2023, which reveals a decline of 2.03% in value and 10.09% in quantity compared to the same period in 2022.

What all you need to know

China and Turkey, the top apparel import sources, experienced declines of 13.11% and 11% respectively. Bangladesh, the second largest apparel import source after China, increased imports by 5.47% in value but saw a decline of 3.02% in quantity.

India, Vietnam, and Pakistan showed positive growth while other countries including Turkey experienced a decline.

The growth seen in Bangladesh is attributed to the inflated prices of raw materials and production costs, but the export volume has declined.


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Jan-Feb 2023: Top Apparel Import Suppliers to the US

19 April 2023, Mumbai 

OTEXA Jan-Feb 2023 Apparel Import: China Down, Bangladesh Up.

According to the latest data released by OTEXA, the total apparel import by the USA from the world in Jan-Feb 2023 reached US$ 13.22 billion, down 11.86% YoY.

However, the country's apparel imports from Bangladesh rose by 2.39% YoY to US$ 1.47 billion during the same period.

China remained the top country from where the USA imported apparel, but the import declined by 29.65% YoY to US$ 2.53 billion. Among the top 10 sourcing apparel countries of the USA, all countries except Bangladesh and India showed negative YoY growth.

Although the value-wise import from Bangladesh grew, the quantity declined by 14.41% YoY.


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Bangladesh: July-April FY2022-23 Apparel Exports Report

15 May 2023, Mumbai 

The latest export performance data and analysis for Bangladesh during the period of July to April in FY2022-23.

According to the data compiled by the Export Promotion Bureau (EPB), Bangladesh's ready-made garment (RMG) exports reached US$38.57 billion during the mentioned ten-month period, exhibiting a growth of 9.09% compared to the same period in the previous year.

The analysis of product categories reveals that knitwear exports contributed US$20.96 billion, while woven garments accounted for US$17.60 billion. Both categories showed a year-over-year (Y-o-Y) growth of 8.97% and 9.24% respectively.

Although the overall statistics for the ten-month period indicate an upward trend, a closer look at the monthly data reveals a downward trend in the recent couple of months. Specifically, during March and April 2023, our RMG exports experienced a decline of 1.04% and 15.48% respectively.

It is worth noting that this decline comes after six consecutive months of positive growth. However, it is important to mention that the growth measured in dollar values does not necessarily reflect real growth in exports.

The increased prices of raw materials, freight costs, and other production expenses have inflated the export value, making the growth in physical quantity less significant.


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China Jan-Mar 2023: Textiles & apparel exports drop 6.74%

25 April 2023, Mumbai 

China's textile, apparel, and accessory exports amounted to $67.229 billion in Q1 2023, down 6.74% YoY, per China's General Administration of Customs.
Garment exports were down 1.3% in the same period, showing improvement after a 14.7% decline in the first two months of the year.
Textile exports, including yarn and fabrics, fell 12.1% to $32.069 billion YoY. Imports of textile yarn and fabrics dropped 25.9% to $2.403 billion in the same period.
China exported $323.344 billion worth of textiles, apparel, and accessories in 2022, with garments accounting for $175.396 billion and textiles $145.079 billion.

CREDITS: report.

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Textile Institute World Conference

14 April 2023, Mumbai 

The University of Huddersfield in the UK is set to host the prestigious 92nd Textile Institute World Conference (TIWC 2023) from July 3-6th, 2023.

This global conference will focus on the theme of "Sustainability of the Textile and Fashion Supply Chain – Transitioning to Zero Carbon and Zero Waste," and will delve into the current state of the industry as well as emerging sustainable practices and solutions across the entire supply chain of textile and fashion products.

What all you need to know

The conference will encompass all stages of the supply chain, from raw material sourcing to manufacturing processes, distribution and retailing, consumer use, and end-of-life phases.

Attendees will have the opportunity to explore innovative approaches, cutting-edge research, and practical solutions to address the pressing challenges of sustainability in the textile and fashion industry.

With a specific emphasis on achieving zero carbon and zero waste, TIWC 2023 will serve as a platform for industry experts, academics, researchers, policymakers, and practitioners to share knowledge, exchange ideas, and collaborate on strategies to promote sustainability and drive positive change in the textile and fashion supply chain.

As the textile and fashion industry grapples with the need for greater sustainability, TIWC 2023 promises to be a critical forum for advancing the discourse, fostering collaboration, and shaping the future of the industry in a more sustainable and responsible direction.

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