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Myanmar garment sector to gain as EU lifts sanctions

25
Apr '12
Myanmar's garment industry is set for revival, including creation of new jobs, as the European Union has announced lifting of the sanctions that it imposed on Myanmar since late 1990s, owing to recent political reforms carried out in Myanmar.

Following the imposition of the sanctions, Myanmar lost its General System of Preferences (GSP) status with the EU, which allowed garment producers of Myanmar to export their goods to the EU market duty free. This resulted in a rise in cost of doing business in Myanmar, which ultimately led to reduction in trade.

The removal of sanctions by the EU is expected to bring back some of the 80,000 garment industry jobs that were lost over the past decade in Myanmar, as it would pave way for several new contracts and orders.

This would lead to generation of around 25,000 jobs in the Myanmarese garment industry this year itself, according to Myanmar Garment Manufacturers association.

Although the sanctions or trade embargoes were imposed by the EU to punish the Southeast Asian nation's former military rulers for their misrule and human right abuses for years together, it proved to be far more detrimental for the poor unskilled workers than for the rulers, as a lot many of these workers lost their jobs.

With the removal of sanctions by EU, the Myanamarese garment industry is now looking forward to a similar gesture from the US, as it could provide further boost to the sector.

Prior to the imposition of sanctions by the US in 2003, around 75 percent of Myanmar's garment exports were destined to the US.

Fibre2fashion News Desk - India


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