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GAN laments over continuous plunging of apparel exports

18
Jun '08
The garment industry of Nepal is in a woeful plight as exports to US, its biggest consumer, has deteriorated by 36 percent in the first five months of this year.

Labor unrest, political instability, fraying confidence of the clients, eroding competitiveness of the products and delayed deliveries have been singled out by Garment Association of Nepal (GAN), as some of the major reason behind this staggering downfall.

Statistics reveal that the country exported products worth a meager US $8.03 million from January-May of 2008 against $12.54 million exports in the same period last year.

On a monthly basis, export figures for March, April and May have depicted a deplorable trend with deliveries plummeting by 66, 49 and 51 percent respectively.

Nepal saw the worst ever performance in May when garment exports fetched a mere $1.1 million against $2.25 million procured in the same month last year.

An observation made by experts show that the 'tarai banada' in Nepal had severely impacted exports preventing manufacturers from delivering their orders on time resulting in their losing out on new orders to other countries.

A closer look at the market trend would bring out the fact that garment exports from Nepal had started witnessing a decline ever since 2002 when US announced duty-free market access to competitor countries from Caribbean and Sub-Saharan region. However, the final blow of devastation came later with the phase-out of quotas in international apparel trading in 2005.


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