Home / Knowledge / News / Apparel/Garments / East Africa a possible hub for apparel sourcing
East Africa a possible hub for apparel sourcing
17
Aug '15
East African countries, particularly Ethiopia and Kenya have the potential to become bigger players in garment manufacturing. But the road ahead won't be easy, according to a report by management consulting firm McKinsey.

In the past two years, a number of European companies such as H&M, Primark, and Tesco began sourcing some of their garments from Ethiopia. The rest of the apparel industry took notice: since 2013, there has been rising interest in not just Ethiopia but also other East African countries as potential sourcing destinations for apparel. Also contributing to the buzz is the renewal of the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA), which gives certain countries in sub-Saharan Africa duty-free access to the US market.

The report which is based on a survey, says East Africa can indeed become a more important centre for apparel sourcing, but only if stakeholders - buyers, governments, and manufacturers - work together to improve business conditions in the region.

Nearly three-quarters of survey respondents said, as they did in 2011 and 2013, that over the next five years they expect to reduce their purchases from Chinese firms. Chinese apparel production has indeed fallen since 2010 - but China remains the undisputed giant of garment manufacturing, with approximately $177 billion in apparel exports in 2013.

According to United Nations projections, sub-Saharan Africa will have the highest growth in working-age population anywhere over the next 20 years. By 2035, the working-age population in the region is expected to be as large as China's today - more than 900 million people. This massive labour pool is capturing the attention of several industries, including apparel.

Within sub-Saharan Africa, East African countries - especially Ethiopia and Kenya, and to a lesser extent Uganda and Tanzania - are of interest to apparel buyers. The governments of both Ethiopia and Kenya are taking steps to develop their domestic textile and garment industries.

Both Ethiopia and Kenya have strengths and weaknesses. Ethiopia has cost advantages whereas Kenya boasts higher production efficiency. Challenges common to both countries include poor infrastructure, cumbersome customs processes, a dearth of technical and managerial talent, and low levels of social and environmental compliance.

Apparel buyers today are sourcing basic, large-volume items from Ethiopia: T-shirts accounted for 46 per cent of the country's exports to the EU-15, and trousers 31 per cent. As much as 60 per cent of exports are sent to Germany and 10 per cent to the US. But Ethiopia accounts for a mere 0.01 per cent of total apparel exports, according to the World Trade Organization.

Must ReadView All

Textiles | On 30th May 2017

Russian regions driving forward light industry & fashion

Russian regions, especially Ivanovo and St. Petersburg, are turning...

Courtesy: Dollar Industries

Apparel/Garments | On 30th May 2017

Dollar Industries registers Rs 906 cr turnover in FY17

Hosiery major Dollar Industries Limited registered a turnover of Rs...

Courtesy: Pan Brothers

Apparel/Garments | On 30th May 2017

Pan Brothers to set up 2 new garment factories

PT Pan Brothers Tbk plans to increase its production capacity by...

Interviews View All

Yash Agarwal
Hitansh Online

Every market region has its own culture and trends

Janak Dhamanwala & Sunil Dhamanwala
Jansun

Moving towards sustainability is also a social change

Sunil Kumar Sharma
Loknayak JPNSSSG Ltd

'The blend of cotton–linen yarn has high demand in the domestic and...

Johan Berlin
InvestKonsult Sweden AB

Investkonsult Sweden AB has been buying and selling second-hand textile...

Kai Poehler
Voith Paper GmbH & Co. KG

The glass mat industry is growing by five to eight per cent annually. Kai...

Mark Paterson
Technical Absorbents Ltd

Mark Paterson, R&D manager of Technical Absorbents Ltd talks about Super...

Tony Ward
Tony Ward

"You have to truly understand what your client wants, know her needs, what ...

Jay Ramrakhiani
Occasions Elegance Wear

It is believed that by early 19th century, Varanasi weavers had moved away ...

Robert Brunner
Devereux

Golfwear and menswear brand Devereux is set for greener pastures. Robert...

Press Release

Press Release

Letter to Editor

Letter to Editor

RSS Feed

RSS Feed

Submit your press release on


editorial@fibre2fashion.com

Letter To Editor






(Max. 8000 char.)

Search Companies





SEARCH

news category


Related Categories:
May 2017

May 2017

Subscribe today and get the latest update on Textiles, Fashion, Apparel and so on.

SUBSCRIBE


Browse Our Archives

GO


E-News Insight
Subscribe Today and Get the
Latest News Update in Your Mail Box.
Advanced Search