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Rising labour cost in Far East to benefit UK's textile industry
Oct '11
UK's textile industry is seen to benefit significantly from rising cost of labour in the Far Eastern economies.

With continuously rising wages in the Far Eastern economies, textile retailers like N Brown are seen to significantly raise their imports from textile producers in UK, which would boost Britain's textile industry.

The home shopping company, N Brown has voiced its concern that it may take around three months to source goods from Asia, which according to it is not a viable solution, particularly in present times of tough competition in the fast-paced fashion industry.

Even after soaking up an eight percent rise in prices, spurred by increase in prices of raw material and wages in the Far East, profits of the online and catalogue retailer grew by around 5.9 percent during the six months to August this year.

The firm revealed that presently around 5 to 10 percent of its goods are procured from the UK-based firms, which even includes small firms in Blackburn, Leicester and Coventry. However, this volume is far less than its imports from the Far Eastern countries, which comes to around 65 percent of its overall requirements. The rest of its requirements are sourced from Turkey and Eastern Europe.

With an intention to kindle the interest of the textile producers, N Brown recently organized a conference of 50 UK firms to motivate them to focus on capacity expansion.

According to the experts, other retailers are also keen to steer a revival of textile industry in the UK.

As the rising wage situation in the Far East countries is not seen easing in the near-term, interest of the textile retailers in the UK textile firms is likely to keep rising.

Although wages in the Far East are never expected to match the ones in the UK, the rising wages in the Far East makes imports from those countries less economical. As the rising wage trend is likely to persist, it would become advantageous to have a supplier base near UK.

The revival of the UK's textile industry, however, cannot happen all of a sudden, owing to very little base at present. But, as the price gap between Far Eastern imports and domestic British supplies reduces, there will be an increase in momentum towards revival of the UK's textile industry.

Fibre2fashion News Desk - India

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