Textile industry is the main earning sector for Bangladesh which cover almost 84% of total export. There is no other sector in parallel which can contribute lot in terms of foreign export. After liberation Textile is the only industry which integrated out economy with remittance, manpower engagement, reputation and our toot steps all over the world. We have a glorious history in development of the industry gradually. Now we have come at a stage to move forward with smartness and value added products. Unfortunately last year (2019) we showed a negative growth in this industry export. We have a lot issues to consider now to come back with significant export growth. We have already achieved a milestone in Green Industry and Denim segment. What we need to do now to handle the global issues with proper strategy, quality and skill development, latest technology adaption, value added products and skill development. Textile Focus editorial team talked with industry stakeholders to finds the reason behind negative growth and how to overcome these issues with some guideline. Here the supply of the key discussion has been mentioned for our readers.
I firmly believe, we the industrialists have all strength, potential and brave to move forward
Md. Fazlul Hoque, Managing Director, Plummy Fashions Ltd.
Business is all about ups and down. And it’s a kind of challenge. As we are strong competitor in world market, it can’t be underestimated also. We need to consider it with great importance. When we climb up in a mountain it naturally becomes challenging to go ahead. Normally, our Competitors have been increased and their strength is also good. Our old competitor Pakistan, India are playing good in the global RMG field. Myanmar and some African countries are our new competitor. Vietnam is always becoming stronger and they are now collaborated with china. So Field is really very tough to play.
Bangladesh faces some negative growth in last year. Decreasing the demand of cloths in world market is one of the good reasons. The second reason behind this negative growth is, we were not fully prepared to compete those strong competitors. We really had some lack of proper preparation. It should have been predicted that, this kind of situation is natural to go ahead and it’s not in our hands to control. We are very small factor in world economy. So we have to be stronger by increasing efficiency, skills, capacity to produce diversified products. We are still depending on cotton based product, but world market has come out from this product to high performance synthetic items. As early as we need to be adapted with total market trend. Only seeking Govt. help will not find us the exact way to go forward. We have to come forward at first. It’s true that we need policy support from Govt. During last 1.5 years increasing of wages, gas, electricity, high bank interest against loan created huge pressure on industry. I firmly believe, we the industrialists have all strength, potential and brave to move forward. Govt. just need to focus on that product price is not increasing for their own policy. Rest will be cared by the industrialists to remain stable growth of our textile and Garments market.
By ensuring ease of doing business and reducing the cost of doing business, we can have a better market in future
Mr. Faruque Hassan, Managing Director, Giant Group & Honorary Consul General of Greece, Bangladesh
Still we are the second largest garments exporter. First phase of 2019 was full of positive growth that turned into negative after June of 2019. However, 2020 is a good start. And it’s full of challenge. So we should focus on some point to achieve full volume positive growth. In our country we produce almost 74% cotton based product. But study shows, in last year global consumption of manmade fiber was approximately 65-75%. I think we need to work in this area of producing manmade fiber based product. I accept it positively and think, Policy and Financial support from Govt. can help us at this issue.
It’s true that Govt. has declared one more percent incentive, but the reality is no one has been able to get this incentive yet. And it is also not that much competitive support for us. In 2010, when we were provided 5% incentives, we had new market and large amount of order. But at present we have no new market and order quantity is also not at satisfactory level. We are competing with each other in a same market. As buyer already knew about this incentive and trying to curtail product price. I believe, in this situation, 10% incentive in man-made product will enable us to create new market. Wherever Govt. will be paid back this amount of money indirectly by tax from backward, forward linkage and port activity.
Product diversification, fabrication development, technological development, machine upgradation, process upgradation, export friendly currency devaluation, skilled young manpower could be our greatest strength toward this 2020 challenge. We also urge cooperation from buyers for using local available resources at this moment of coronavirus crisis so that shortfall from china can be mitigated easily. By ensuring ease of doing business and reducing the cost of doing business, we can have a better market in future. Consequently, our Govt. must take steps to eradicate bureaucratic complexity, as Garments is a fashion item, time bound item. A small delay can cause huge impact.
I hope we will go forward with more enthusiasm and our industry growth will be continued as well
Engr. Md. Shafiqur Rahman CIP, President, The Institution of Textile Engineers & Technologist (ITET) & Managing Director, HAMS Group
I think the panic that have been created in our Garments and textiles industry in last year can be mitigates in this New Year. There were some certain causes behind this negative export growth. One of the causes is decreasing the amount of garments consumption in world market. Besides, our neighbor countries are developing more than previous. They are providing more incentives in this sectors than us. Unimaginable rupee devaluation happened in India and Pakistan. Pakistan achieved GSP facility from EU. So, cost of production has significantly decreased in Pakistan. That’s why some orders from Bangladesh moved to them. However, it’s a good news for us that Hon’ble Prime Minister declared to provide 1% more incentives for RMG sectors. Additionally, we can see slight devaluation in taka. We know it neither can help us to get order from international market nor mitigate price crisis. But being so prepared we can repulse any sudden crisis. We are also trying to keep the market balanced by cutting the cost of production and producing diversified product. High amount of bank interest restrained industry owner to invest more in last year. Govt. already declared to make interest percentage in single digit from the next April, 2020. I hope, implementation of this declaration will surely inspire to invest more. As automation is the ultimate solution to ongoing industry crisis, I believe, in this new year most of the factory will adopt automation and march further with technological development. Usually we the Textiles community, Engineers’ community, Business community like BGMEA, BKMEA, BTMA are always aware to make our sector sustainable for long term business growth. Keeping the MUJIB YEAR ahead Govt. has already initiated some outstanding plan for Textiles and Garments industry. So I hope we will go forward with more enthusiasm and our industry growth will be continued as well.
As Bangladesh has every strength in terms of technology and manpower setup, the textile industry will come back strongly
Md. Amanur Rahman, Managing Director, Dysin International Ltd.
The second half of 2019 has been tough for our garment and textile industry. Because of lack of order volume in manufacturing. Obviously manufacturer have struggled for 07 months vigorously. But little in the year of 2020 have been picked up. Every trend we have seen in garment and textile industry sometime there is a growth trend, sometime there is also negative trend. But we believe it should be picked up. As Bangladesh has every strength in terms of technology and manpower setup. The textile industry will come back strongly. Every problem is an opportunity and for that everybody should try to find new scope of business opportunities. We and our executive talk lots about new product, diversified product. We the chemical technology company try to support the production of sustainable and innovative products. And we also feel Bangladesh need to grow the amount of value addition. So we believe, being a chemical company what is our future is changing ourselves to grow our own manufacturing. That’s why we are building new manufacturing plant and investing more in terms of chemical manufacturing. The view is to make our textile industry stronger. Lead time is also to be reduced. As manufacturer import chemicals a lot, so they must plan very earlier. If lead time decreases, inventory cost will go down and this will give industry benefit also cost will go down. Govt. policy support for chemical industry can grow very big which can give textile industry very big strength.
We have still bigger capacity, strong name, if we can adopt automation as early as possible, hope 2020 will be a good year
Md. Abdur Rashid, Managing Director, SGS Bangladesh Ltd.
2019 was not really good for us. We were struggling from the beginning of the year which ended up with negative scenario. Though November-December was good, but it could not cover all the backlog happened. It’s a matter of hope that we have started 2020 with good pace. It can be due to peak season or it could be like that our bad time is over. Whether it will be understood in March-April, if this flow of business continues. But at a same time, Vietnam, Myanmar, Ethiopia, Cambodia are forwarding with more strength. More Challenge for Bangladesh is ahead. We will have to face many difficulties in future. Automation is the ultimate solution. Many are talking about industry 4.0 revolution, but still we are in manual process. Another thing is we feel proud of green factory, of course it is good for reputation and brand image. But if we can’t increase efficiency adopting automation, we won’t be able to compete with Vietnam. And other competitors. I think, we should emphasize on increasing productivity, efficiency so that we can have competitive less price for product. Overall we have still bigger capacity, strong name, if we can adopt automation as early as possible, hope 2020 will be a good year.
The experience of Bangladesh in the RMG sector is our biggest strength
Meherun N. Islam, President and Group Managing Director, CEMS Global
The textiles industry of Bangladesh has been performing wonderfully for the past few years and have been performing exceptionally well in the denim segment. Many factories are at par with international standard and are also adopting ‘green initiatives’ to become more eco-friendly. However, much training and development are required in water treatment and wastewater management to enhance the skill of the workforce who deal with compliance as it has become a vital issue for getting orders. As a trade show organizer since 1992, CEMS is familiar with the requirements of the sector and has been an integral part of the transition of the RMG industry of Bangladesh in terms of creating a platform for entrepreneurs to directly source all requirements of production from machinery, chemicals, to yarn, fabric and trims.
With the initiative to encourage more factories to go green, we organize Water Expo, on the sidelines of which we organize knowledge sharing seminars in collaboration with ESTex- BUET and from 2017, they have successfully arranged 3 seminars per year on water, wastewater treatment and ETP.
Bangladesh has been consistent in holding the second position in global apparel export and even though exports fell by a small percentage in the year 2019, it is not something that will be a disadvantage for us, but rather a stepping stone to understand contemporary consumer dynamics and improvise on our shortcomings.
The experience of Bangladesh in the RMG sector is our biggest strength and our resources have been trained for years and are prepared to combat any upcoming challenges coming ahead of us.