The Seventh edition of Bangladesh Denim Expo highlighted the need for transparency within the entire denim supply chain. The promotion and discussion of ‘Transparency’ from a manufacturing country like Bangladesh has attracted the attention of global buyers. The exhibition has held from 8 to 9 November 2017. Though the exhibition was mainly covering denim and allied industries the ‘Transparency’ theme was representing and explaining the whole apparel and textile manufacturing sector of Bangladesh.
‘Transparency’ has been the demand of consumers particularly backed by number of ‘Trade Traceability and Responsible Production & Consumption’ promoting and protecting NGO’s of western countries. Due to the extreme pressures from those campaigns, global brands have been under pressure for ensuring ‘Transparency’ of their value chain. Some leading brands like M&S and C&A already has started to publish information of their production and sourcing bases.
When a manufacturing country like Bangladesh, who has suffered for bad media images at post Rana Plaza era, offer discussions and exhibitions on ‘Transparency’, it became a big story not only in Bangladesh but also throughout the world. Overwhelming participation of denim manufacturing and support service companies and their openness in sharing information in ‘Transparency’ seminars and exhibitions has proved once again that Bangladesh is one of the most transparent apparel manufacturers in the world.
Bangladesh is not only transparent to allow access to anybody to its manufacturing units but also transparent in sharing manufacturing and material costs as well. It is indeed uncommon that the buyers know all the cost components of the sellers for any business. But most of the apparel factories of Bangladesh have been sharing all costs openly to the buyers. And so the sector has no secret! Now the buyers putting orders in Bangladesh knows every details of their production and can control anything they require.
So, ‘Transparency’ though has opened up all secretes of businesses of Bangladeshi textile and apparel manufacturers, it has been a great brand to sell Bangladeshi products. With the guarantee of openness now final consumers should feel confident in buying Bangladeshi apparels.
Mostafiz Uddin ,Founder and CEO, Bangladesh Denim Expo said, “Our target is to improve the whole denim and apparel industry to bring excellence to the sector, share knowledge and increase collaboration that would help highlighting the best practices and potential to manufacture more quality products.”
Industry insiders opined that ‘Transparency’ should not be one sided affair. The brands also should be equally transparent. Global leading brands know that Bangladeshi apparel makers now don’t have enough profitability to provide better life to its workers and people around the industries. Most of the factories are struggling to save each pennies of profit. At this tight profit margin no industry can flourish. So global brands should be transparent enough and ethical enough in product pricing and they should offer ethical prices for Bangladeshi manufacturers. Speakers at the seminars held in the exhibition also echoed to this.
For the first time in Bangladesh, the exhibition facilitated 3D shows providing virtual tours to the denim manufacturing factories of Bangladesh.
The exhibition highlighted strong growth in denim sectors of Bangladesh. A buyer visiting the show said, “Bangladesh is gradually setting up with hi-tech for producing high-end products to attract buyers particularly from the European Union and the United States.” Bangladesh denim sector is growing both in value addition and in quantity of production. Mostafiz, CEO of Denim Expo informed, “At least six new denim fabric manufacturing mills will come into operation in Bangladesh in the next two years.”
According to Eurostat data, Bangladesh exported denim products worth $699 million to the EU market in the first six months of 2017. According to data released by Otexa, Bangladesh earned $393 million from the US, a 6.6% increase on January and July of this year.
The exhibition was fruitful to the participants as well. “We are getting good response. More buyers have come in this event. We hope denim sector will do very well in coming years”, said Nur E Yasmin Fatima, CEO, Nice Denim Mills Ltd.
Some foreign companies have already shown their interests to expand their businesses as they believe that Bangladesh is a very important sourcing place for RMG products. They urged the Bangladesh government for taking effective measures to help the emerging denim sector by ensuring infrastructure facilities along with utility services particularly power and gas for industrial areas, said exhibitor and buyers.
For the first time in the show, a full pledged fashion and product innovation show was organized during the exhibition call ‘Denim Innovation Night’. The gala fashion shows presented new developments of one largest denim garment manufacturers in Bangladesh, Pacific Jeans.
In the two days exhibition, more than 65 exhibitors from 12 countries including Bangladesh, Germany, Italy, Japan, China, Singapore, Turkey, Vietnam, India, Pakistan, Spain and Hong Kong participated in the exhibition to showcase their denim pants, fabrics and modern technology.
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