According to data from Bangladesh Customs, collected by the Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA), ready-made garment exports recovered nicely on a positive note in August with around 45 per cent growth year-on-year. The industry has experienced such positive growth after a negative trend for seven consecutive months However, most shipments do not have a positive atmosphere since orders that had been stopped or canceled over the last few months following the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic have been reported in the majority of shipments.
According to results, RMG exports last posted a positive growth of 1.26 per cent in December 2019. Between 1 and 30 August this year, Bangladesh ‘s apparel shipments stood at $3,238.75 million, up from $2,239.29 million over the corresponding 2019 period.
In March , April, May, June and July of this year, the country earned $2.25 billion, $374.67 million, $1.23 billion, $2.24 billion and $3.24 billion respectively, reflecting a decline of 20.14 per cent, 85.25 per cent, 62.06 per cent, 6.63 per cent and 1.98 per cent over the months between March and July of this year over the corresponding months of last year, according to BGMEA data.
Apparel entrepreneurs have related growth to two major factors-restoring a portion of canceled orders and not affecting shipments during the Eid holidays. “This is tremendous growth and is beyond our standards,” said Fazlul Hoque, managing director at Plummy Fashions Ltd, the greenest knitwear factory in the world. He further clarified that amid the eight-day Eid-ul-Adha holidays in August, more than $3 billion in earnings was merely remarkable. There were many manufacturers, who for various reasons did not report these orders to the BGMEA, and the orders are now being shipped. About new orders, he said they receive orders that are now 15-20 per cent lower than last year.
But Mohammed Hatem, senior vice president of the BKMEA, called the growth ‘unusual,’ claiming that many international buyers are not placing fresh orders now, and new order shipments will start from next month and beyond.
In response to a question, BGMEA President Dr. Rubana Huq said that a six-month average data would be a better reflection (of the export scenario) on a year-based monthly figure instead of this year. She said category-wise, cotton pants have retained the largest share of growth, while top-level product categories level on manmade fiber (MMF) have also begun to see growth. “Women’s cotton trousers, in particular, have experienced substantial growth and their share of our overall exports is also higher,” she said.