When it comes to eventful and unpredictable years, there are few that can beat 2016. There have been numerous celebrity deaths, world changing events, and quite a few unexpected shocks. First there was Brexit, which no one saw coming and many laughed off as a joke. The exit of the UK from the European common market will certainly cause some trade splashes, both in the textile industry and beyond.
However, the event which is already having a huge impact on the garment industry is the election of Donald Trump to the presidency of the United States of America. Trump ran on a platform of populist trade appeals, and as a result, many in the garment industry have begun to feel some nervous sweat forming as they look to their plans for 2017 and beyond.
Timid Garment Markets
There are many different countries which rely on garment exports for a large part of their revenue. These countries have begun to get nervous as they wonder what actions President elect Trump will take and what effect these actions will have on their ability to conduct business.
Bangladesh is one country that relies heavily on garment exports. It has become known as one of the world’s leading exporters of low end apparel. Were access to the US markets cut of, the economic consequences could be grim.
However there are those that say that there is not much to worry about from talk coming from the US. These individuals argue that the lack of capable workers as well as the difference in wages and programs like the special economic zone established by Bangladesh for Chinese garment firms.
These fears hold try across the board. Pakistan, which relies on a large garment manufacturing industry, has similar fears regarding access to the US market, as well as similar claims that everything will be as it currently is.
Only time will tell what will ultimately come of the events of 2016. The world can only hope that our leaders, combined with human innovation, will help pull us through these chaotic times.