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WDA invests $6.8 mn to grow fashion & textile sector
Sep '11
The Singapore Workforce Development Agency (WDA) announced that $6.8 million has been set aside to grow manpower capabilities of the textile and fashion industry. To do so, WDA has collaborated with the Textile and Fashion Federation (TaFf) to develop training initiatives under the Textile and Fashion Technology Workforce Skills Qualifications (WSQ) framework, with an investment of more than $2.8 million.

An additional $4 million has been projected to train another 2,800 workers over the next three years under this framework. In addition, WDA is spearheading the move towards “green” or sustainable fashion by jointly organizing the inaugural Fashionably Sustainable Competition with TaFf.

Mr Teo Ser Luck, Minister of State (MOS) for Ministry of Trade and Industry was the Guest of Honour at the grand finale of the competition today. Three winners were selected="true"="true" after a fashion catwalk where the designs of all seven finalists were showcased –the top two winners each won an entry pass to the prestigious Paris Fashion Week with a return air ticket and accommodation fully paid. Each also received $1,500 cash prize; another winner was selected="true"="true" for the Society of Dyers and Colourist (SDC) award, a United Kingdom, London competition, called the SDC International Design Competition 2011 that shared the same vision of sustainability. The winner won $500 cash prize. Please refer to Annex A for the Profiles of the Fashionably Sustainable Competition's Finalists.

As the green trend gains importance in the global fashion market, the local textile & fashion industry requires new capabilities in implementing sustainable fashion practices to meet the needs of their customers which include key global brands and major department stores. To support this trend, WDA has spearheaded the development and incorporation of sustainable fashion training programmes into the Textile and Fashion Technology Workforce Skills Qualification (WSQ) framework.

As the industry moves towards higher value-added activities in areas such as design and product development, global sourcing, supply chain management and merchandising, WDA is also developing programmes to support the manpower needs of the transformed industry. To date, more than 1,200 workers have been trained by the Textile and Fashion Industry Training Centre (TaF.tc) over the last two years. Some 180 trainees have attained full qualifications in WSQ Diploma and WSQ Advanced Certificates in Fashion Technology. Please refer to Annex B on the details of the Textile and Fashion Technology WSQ framework. Prior to the Fashionably Sustainable Competition, 44 of the participants completed the WSQ Manage Sustainable Fashion Value Chain programme which provided them with the foundational knowledge of sustainable fashion before embarking on their designs.

51 graduates completed the WSQ Diploma in Fashion Technology received their transcripts from WDA's Chief Executive, Mr Wong Hong Kuan. Since August 2010, all 51 graduates have successfully secured jobs as merchandisers, designers, compliance executives, etc with companies in the textile and fashion industry shortly upon their graduation.

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