Home / Knowledge / News / Textiles / More verbal & visual support needed for battle of sewing machines
More verbal & visual support needed for battle of sewing machines
Nov '10
There are indications that some departments and officials within government are concerned about the way the union and the bargaining council is addressing the current battle of the sewing machines. Whilst a determined few Chinese-South African clothing employers battle for the sustainability of South Africa's clothing sector the rest of the clothing and even the textile sector remains silent and complicit.

Alex Liu, Chairperson of the Newcastle Chinese Chamber of Commerce said in a telephonic interview with The ReDress Consultancy, that he was disappointed that the clothing union (Sactwu) had not fully acknowledge their goodwill act of implementing their new wage structures.

“This action by the concerned clothing companies in Newcastle demonstrates our willingness to find amicable solutions to the current situation the clothing industry finds itself in and that we are acting now and not waiting for December when hopefully a solution to the crisis will be found,” said Liu.

The industry cannot maintain itself at the current agreed wage structures, said Liu and we need the union and the bargaining council to “realize this.” What we are suggesting is a wage structure that will provide space for “small business to grow and to provide productivity output incentives.“ Liu said that the clothing companies in Newcastle were able to provide quality products and reliable turn around. However, it is the wage structure of this sector that undermines its capabilities.

Both the bargaining council and the union argue that non-compliant companies create unfair competition against those companies that are compliant. We need to excavate what this really means and so far the union, bargaining council or even the complaint companies can provide no statistical evidence to back this stance.

Commentary from industry insiders say that that the bargaining council and the union are very quick to enforce regulations, however, when it comes to clothing employers asking either the union or bargaining council to investigate labour issues on their behalf they are met with numerous gate keeping tactics. The sentiment by employers is that the relationship with the union and the bargaining council is one sided. “This is a two-way street,” said one employer

The current impasse within the industry has filtered down to the offices of Pravin Gordhan. Two paragraphs imbedded in an article, (Pravin's social contract, M&G, October 29-November 4, 2010), demonstrates that government is conflicted as to how they are to deal with the clothing wage debate. The article states:

“His officials speak privately about the pressures on Chinese clothing factories in KwaZulu-Natal as a crucial example on which to base a rethink of labour regulations. Workers angrily insisted that their employers be allowed to continue paying below sectorial minimimums rather than lose their jobs. Calls for wage restraint and greater flexibility in collective bargaining agreements … remain central to treasury thinking.”

Must ReadView All

FDI in Vietnamese textile-garment projects on the rise

Apparel/Garments | On 24th Jun 2018

FDI in Vietnamese textile-garment projects on the rise

The European Union-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement and the Comprehensive ...

Courtesy: Alizilla

Apparel/Garments | On 24th Jun 2018

Alibaba Group sets up office in Kuala Lumpur

Strengthening its commitment to Malaysia, Alibaba Group has set up an ...

Bombay Dyeing plans to wind up Indonesian JV

Textiles | On 24th Jun 2018

Bombay Dyeing plans to wind up Indonesian JV

Bombay Dyeing & Manufacturing Co Ltd plans to wind up its loss making ...

Interviews View All

Top executives
Textile industry, India

The event should be organised every year

Victor Chao

‘In future, clothing boundary lines will become increasingly blurred.’

Sunil Rathore
Lacoste India

‘New vendor is welcome if he offers cost, quality and timely delivery’

Apurva Kothari

No Nasties was the first fashion brand in India to make 100 per cent...

Kalai Selvi

Vidyashilp Academy in Bengaluru is the country's first Fairtrade School....

Suresh P Bagrecha

Komal Texfab, founded in 1981, is into manufacturing of knitted fabrics,...

Marcel Alberts

Coating at a fibre level is a practice not usually seen in the...

Eamonn Tighe
Nature Works LLC

Eamonn Tighe, Fibres and Nonwovens - Business Development Manager of...

Larry L Kinn
Suominen Corporation

Larry L Kinn, Senior Vice President - Operations Americas of Suominen...

Nisha Chanda
Whistling Woods International School of Fashion

<div>A lack of upgraded courses in costume designing and fashion as per...

Karan Arora
Karan Arora

Bridal couture created with rich Indian heritage, exquisite craftsmanship...

Cigdem Akin
Cigdem Akin

She has carved a niche for herself as the national brand of Turkey. Her...

Press Release

Press Release

Letter to Editor

Letter to Editor

RSS Feed

RSS Feed

Submit your press release on


Letter To Editor

(Max. 8000 char.)

Search Companies


Leave your Comments

June 2018

Subscribe today and get the latest update on Textiles, Fashion, Apparel and so on.

news category

Related Categories:

Advanced Search