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Innovation, tech to boost Colombian textiles
05
Feb '16
Colombia's quality, innovation and expertise are some of the key attributes that have kept the textile industry growing at a dynamic pace over the last ten years. Household linens, t-shirts and shapewear were some of the main products exported during 2015 to the U.S.

This helped position the country as one of the best manufacturers in the western hemisphere, holding productions for major international brands such as Victoria's Secret, Levi & Strauss Co., Nautica, Inditex, Eddie Bauer, Polo Ralph Lauren, Timberland, Tommy Hilfiger, among many others.

Colombia's 10 Free Trade Agreements have helped it strengthen its position as a trade ally for many countries and manufacturers, especially for US companies wanting to penetrate the Latin market. Between January and November 2015 close to 2,028 Colombian textile companies exported their products, recording a historic number of trade transactions between Colombia and the US, ProColombia, the Colombian Government Trade Bureau in charge of promoting exports, foreign direct investment and international tourism said in a press release.

Sales accounted for 36 per cent of the total textile exports in 2015.

“This share is expected to continue to grow as more innovative fabrics and technologies are being developed by Colombian suppliers as well as trade advantages with the US continue to grow with zero per cent duties, short lead times, and flexible productions,” said Maria Claudia Lacouture, President of ProColombia.

Colombia's textile industry is globally recognized for producing raw materials, functional finishes and accessories. Also for developing new natural and elastic fiber fabrics such as antibacterial coffee-based fabrics, fire-resistant buttons made of retardant additives, sun protection t-shirts, textiles with vitamin E and slimming capsules, anti-humidity shape-wear or body-shaping swimwear.

According to ProColombia, these innovative products, which aim to protect the customers' health as well as the environment wellbeing, match the international buyers' current demands.

Colombia's textile innovation will be on display at Magic, the world's largest fashion marketplace held every February and August in Las Vegas. For Colombian textile industry, it will be part of a strategic promotion plan created by ProColombia to facilitate business opportunities for Colombian suppliers with American buyers, the release said. (SH)

Fibre2Fashion News Desk – India

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