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Innovation can reduce lead time: BAYLA

Bangladesh Apparel Young Leaders Association (BAYLA) highlighted the urgent need of increasing workers’ efficiency, adoption of technology and innovation to achieve a short lead time for exporting readymade garment (RMG) products.

The online session titled ‘Leading with Lead Times’ took place on Sunday (August 15, 2021).

In addition, at the virtual program, panelists also stressed finding ways of reducing apparel manufacturing costs and offer competitive prices along with lessening the lead time duration.

BAYLA-lead-time-RMG-export
Figure: Speakers at the virtual session.

Panelists opined that with graduation from least developed country (LDC), the long-standing economic reality will change. Meaning, Bangladesh also gradually need to change the terms of agreement with importing countries.

The program was part of BAYLA’s ongoing study ‘Road to Recovery’.

Abdullah Hil Rakib, MD, Team Group and Director of Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA); MI Siddique Selim Mahbub, Director, Bangladesh Knitwear Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BKMEA) and Chief Executive Director, Bay Creations Director; Razeeb Haider, Director, Bangladesh Textile Mills Association (BTMA) and MD, Outpace and RA Spinning Mills, among others, were present as panelists.

The season was moderated by Ehsan Haq, Director of BAYLA and Director of Knittex Industries Ltd.

Panelists said Bangladesh has scope to progress its lead time. Vietnam has already outshined Bangladesh and became the second-largest apparel exporter in the world, they opined.

Abdullah Hil Rakib said “If we can understand the customers and if we do a lot of homework, we can reduce a lot of lead time. Particularly off docks are not efficient, we have got to train the people in off docks to load and unload properly. We have got to make a roadmap of today’s efficiency vs tomorrow’s efficiency.”

“BGMEA’s innovation center is considering a training program for 3d Sampling, where designers will be trained. Netherland fashion institute is collaborating with BGMEA to train at least 100 designers. This will help us reduce at least two weeks of lead time,” Rakib added.

Ehsan Haq, Director of BAYLA and Director of Knittex Industries Ltd said, “In RMG sector Bangladesh’s lead time is comparatively higher than most. BAYLA thinks we have a lot of scope to increase efficiency in this sector.”

Haq added, “Personal negligence and collective misconduct increase the lead time at various stages from sampling to shipping. There is no substitute for identifying each point that creates lead time and taking actions to reduce them.”

Speakers proposed recognizing each and every points including goods handling at off-docks, customs automation, fumigation of cotton imported from USA that make the lead time longer and take needed measures to cut the shipment times.

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