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Dearth in workforce impacts exports of apparels
Jun '10
Although, apparel firms in HCM City are witnessing an increase in orders pouring from US and Japan, they fear to accept the same owing to dearth of labourers.

A visit at one of the firms shop floors indicate, via layer of dust found on the machines, that the manufacturing lines have not been functional for a very long time. Thereby, indicating shortage of labourers.

This company has also placed a notice board at its entrance about its requirement for 300 workforces who can operate industrial machines, 100 apprentices and 100 supporting labourers. Depending then on their skills, salaries will commence from 2 – 3.5 million dong per month. Till now this firm has received only a few applications for jobs.

Due to such fewer job applicants, firms are forced to refuse orders. During the previous years, incase a firm was short of workers to meet its orders, it could ask for assistance from other apparel firms. The situation now is completely different, as majority of the firms are facing shortages in workforce.

Buyers from Japan and US have been continuously placing orders with apparel firms in Vietnam. But yet the export volume has risen by only 15-20 percent as compared to last year. More over, firms have now become selective while booking orders, as they cannot take all of them, as their labourers are almost 1000 less than its pre-crisis peak.

During the last decade, Vietnam's apparel exports to the US have surged by 100 times, exports to EU has become three times and exports to Japan have doubled.

Vietnam has a lot of potential to grow, only if the labour productivity rise by 30 percent, domestic content surges by 20 percent and Vietnam begins to sell goods designed by itself instead of simply outsourcing orders.

Fibre2Fashion News Desk - India

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