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Clothing sector rescue's Japanese economy
Apr '10
Due to decreasing labour costs, Bangladesh's overseas sale of clothing, to highly developed industrialised countries is thriving. Increasing number of economically-priced clothing sold in Japan is made in Bangladesh, adding to deflation in Japan's economy.

A customer bought six items for her family from H&M's Shinjuku outlet in Tokyo for a mere sum of 6,158 yen. She paid only one-third the price of a department store. Of the six outfits this customer bought, she noted that a cardigan and blouse she bought was made in Bangladesh.

By streamlining its sales and manufacturing processes in a number of factories in Asia, with lower salaried employees, H&M can both produce clothes and also sell them at dirt cheap prices.

In Shanghai, where there is continuous increase in salaries, the monthly wage for factory workers in Dhaka, including allowances and overtime is approximately 8,950 yen, which is one-fourth of Shanghai's salary.

Since 2000, clothing companies such as H&M, Zara from Spain and GAP from USA are taking advantage of the availability of low-wage labourers by shifting their manufacturing units to Bangladesh. Japanese retail giant, Ito-Yokado, began production only last year.

Bangladesh, one of the poorest countries in the world, with cheap labour force, to emerge as a benefactor and as a prop-up to Japan's falling economy. The country witnessed a jump in its overseas sales of garments from $640 million in 1990 to $10.92 million in 2008, positioning it at third place, behind China and Turkey.

Fibre2Fashion News Desk - India

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