Time flies so fast, the Fiscal Year 2020 is over and Bangladesh textile and apparel industry survived tackling the fallout that arose due to COVID 19. If I want to depict a year review many things can come into consideration, however, I want only to portray few burning points that were the talk of the industry throughout the year.
A dismal apparel export: Readymade garment (RMG) export fetched $31.45 billion in the justconcluded fiscal year. Though this is a 12.5 percent year-on-year growth, however, it is 7.84 percent negative growth compared to FY 19 which fetched $34.1 billion worth of export.
As for the apparel export product category performance, the less export of woven garments contributes to the export loss that was $17.2 billion in FY19 declined to $14.0 billion in FY 20 and $14.4 billion in FY 21. However, apparel export in FY 21 was satisfactory as the global market passing a volatile circumstance.
Green: We know BGMEA wins the ‘2021 USGBC Leadership Award’ by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) for contributions to sustainable, healthy, equitable and resilient buildings and communities.
The industry has undergone tremendous transformation in the last couple of years. The safety revolution has been done through the collaboration of global brands and retailers, manufacturers, government, ILO, development partners, several national and global unions.
The green transformation comes at a cost, and it is manufacturers’ rightful demand to get more ethical prices for their products from their buyers. In contrast, the buyers are squeezing prices of apparel endlessly.
Cooperation: An unprecedented collaboration was seen among different textile, apparel and accessories associations including BGMEA, BKMEA, BTMA, BGAPMEA, etc. which symbolizes an integrated textile and apparel industry to grow together for sustainable business.
Government cooperation to assist the sector during the ongoing COVID crisis was highly praised by the sector leaders. The Parliament passed a budget for fiscal 2021-22 on June 28 which did not meet fully the demand made by the textile and garment manufacturers and exporters. However, the textile and garment manufacturers welcomed the budget as the new tax was not imposed.
Worry to fix supply chain difficulty: The COVID-19 outbreak led to supply chain disruption, still, the global textile industry is facing a mountain load of challenges. Though Bangladesh has to get back a huge amount of lost work orders, however, for lack of proper infrastructure, logistic and transport support the industry could not grab the expected fruits. The textile and apparel leaders are working in collaboration with the government to solve the barriers.
Technology: Technology has come out as a stronger tool to survive during this COVID time. From sample development to product showcase, in every aspect utilization of technology has emerged as the way forward tool for the industry.
In the new normal scenario, global online marketing platforms gained traction. From Bangladesh’s aspect global online marketing platform Alibaba gets gigantic popularity for small to big companies to grow their business in the global market.
Manmade fiber: Sector leaders emphasizing going for non-cotton apparel item making. In this regard, they are encouraging more and more investment in producing manmade fiber locally. Leaders also demanded incentives for the products made with MMF. They are highlighting it as a good way to add value to the country’s textile and apparel items. Which has the potential to fetch an additional $2 billion annually if we nurture.