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Kenyan govt likely to ban used clothing imports
Dec '12
A Sessional Paper seeking a ban on imports of used and second-hand clothing items is pending approval of the Kenyan Parliament.
The Sessional Paper Number 9 of 2012 seeks a ban on import of used garments to safeguard the domestic textile and apparel firms in Kenya.
In the recent past, unhealthy competition extended by second-hand clothing has caused several domestic textile and apparel industries in Kenya to shutdown.
The proposed ban has already been cleared by the Cabinet and if it gets the Parliamentary nod, it would become effective from January 2013.
Kenya's Industrialization Minister Henry Kosgey, whose ministry is leading the motion, said the move is aimed at fortifying the domestic manufacturing industry and facilitating creation of thousands of jobs for locals.
He said the country cannot envisage establishing itself as an emergent industrialized nation by 2030, if it still needs to import its most basic clothing requirement. Banning used clothing imports is the only way for securing jobs for domestic youth, he added.
He said his Ministry would join hands with other government agencies to ensure that all entry points and borders are sealed for entry of second hand clothing.
However, traders of used and second-hand clothing are opposing the move saying that instead of trying to revive the defunct industries and enabling them to compete with imported clothing, the Government is trying to push them out of business.
They further add that the middle and lower income classes in the country, which largely depend on such clothes, would be badly impacted by such a step.
The move is also opposed to the stance taken by the Ministry of Finance. In his June Budget speech, Finance Minister Njeru Githae urged the Parliament to reduce duty on second hand clothing import to provide enhanced access to such clothing to Kenyan citizens.

Fibre2fashion News Desk - India

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