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Bangladesh and other jeans exporting countries witness a dip in export to US

Top jeans supplier country in the USA, Bangladesh saw its shipments dip 3.73% for the 11 months through November to $522.78 million, on par with the previous month’s data from the Commerce Department’s Office of Textiles & Apparel (OTEXA).

The denim purchase was hit severely during the pandemic. But steadied in November amid a holiday push. In the year to date through November, denim apparel imports declined 26.01% to a value of $2.57 billion compared to the same 11-month period in 2019, according to new data from OTEXA. The decline was a slight development from the 27.42 percent year-to-date decrease in October.

jeans-export-USA-declined-November-2020
Figure: Jeans export USA declined in November 2020.

While imports of denim apparel from No. 2 producer Mexico fell 43.6 percent to $424.74 million.

3rd-place Vietnam lost some of its gains from the prior two months, with a year-to-date increase of 0.68 percent to $342.09 million in November. This trailed by 1.08 percent and 1.77 percent year-to-date increase in October and September, correspondingly.

China continued to lose ground as a jeans production center in the month. For the year to date through November, imports from China nosedived 53.75 percent to $304.82 million.

Chinese manufacturers have been dealing with fallout from the pandemic much like the rest of the world, while also suffering from the strategic sourcing shifts by importers looking to reduce risk and costs from tariffs derived from the trade war with the U.S.

Morris Goldfarb, Chairman and CEO of G-III Apparel Group, said on a conference call with analysts last month that “Our development of product and production in China come down significantly.”

“We’ve done a masterful job of bringing down our China production from possibly 85 percent of this company’s production several years ago down to… around 30 percent today,” Goldfarb said.

Among second-tier countries with a smaller market share, imports from Cambodia continued to show strength, with a year-to-date gain of 13.62 percent to $130.77 million. Pakistan flattened its decline to 3.25 percent to $227.81 million in the period.

Among 3rd-tier suppliers with notable gains were Madagascar, up 5.45 percent to $30.60 million, and Ethiopia, gaining 21.59 percent to $21.29 million.

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