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Demand for hiking wage hassles textile industry
11
Mar '08
Textile workers, who were waging a strike, have rejected the 7 percent hike offered by their employers, to continue with their protest that has entered its second week today.

The 16,000 striking workers are holding out for a 10 percent salary increment.

As a consequence, the textile sector is loosing millions of emalangeni while investors are keeping away from giving any further financial assistance to the sector.

Moreover, the industry is also facing the challenge of high utility, transport costs and of course an increasing demand for higher wages.

However, the International Monetary Fund opined that wages in the garment sector are already high compared to the neighboring countries, except for South Africa.

Besides, experts believe that after 2012, competition is likely to get more stringent among Asian countries, especially China, India, Bangladesh and Vietnam who are expected to produce textile goods at costs lower than Swaziland.

Presently, the Government together with industrialist is focusing on restoring exports, attracting new investments and promoting organic cotton.

An ongoing organic cotton project emphasizes on growing cotton on lands currently unsuited for sugar production.

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