Bangladesh is set to showcase the strength and potential of its apparel industry, but the exporters fear a fall in sales ahead with runaway inflation bearing down on the West amid a war raging in Europe.
The Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association in partnership with the Bangladesh Apparel Exchange will organise the “Made in Bangladesh Week” starting on Nov 12 in Dhaka.
At a news conference on the event, BGMEA President Faruque Hassan spoke about the situation on Saturday.
Bangladesh has been enjoying growth in garment exports since August last year with products worth $42.6 billion sent abroad in 2021-22 fiscal year.
“The numbers were high in July-August this year as well, but the purchase orders have been shrinking. For the next holiday season, orders have dropped by 20-30 percent due to rising inflation and recession in Europe and the US, our main markets,” Faruque said.
He said retailers are “struggling to cope” with the global market situation as sales of many brands are experiencing a slump.
“I’m fearing that our export growth may be negative in the coming months.”
About the event, he said its goal is to present the “important and positive sides” of the apparel industry on the world stage. The BGMEA chief expects it to overhaul the Made in Bangladesh brand worldwide.
The initiative has been taken to “create opportunity” by presenting the apparel industry as a “sustainable and innovative” industry to international brands and retailers, he said.
Faruque said the weeklong programme will be the “first of its kind” and branding Bangladesh-made garment products will aid in recovering from the pandemic losses.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has agreed to inaugurate the event, he added.
The programme will feature the 37th IF World Fashion Convention, 3rd Dhaka Apparel Summit, Dhaka Apparel Expo, Bangladesh Denim Expo and competitive award ceremonies. It will also include the inauguration of BGMEA Innovation Centre and a special workshop BGMEA University of Fashion & Technology or BUFT.