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Vietnam fabric imports up five per cent

Vietnam’s fabric imports in May 2019 increased 5.8 per cent year-on-year. Garment companies in Vietnam are hugely dependent on imported fabric. In 2017, for instance, two-thirds of the industry’s entire demand for clothes was imported. While the yarn and apparel segments have grown strongly, others like dyeing are poorly developed. Local companies lack proper awareness of the dyeing process. They also lack the technologies, human resources and skills required to develop this sector.

The lopsided development of its various segments and the dependence on imports have weakened the textile industry’s competitiveness and hindered its ability to add value. In fact, the huge fabric imports are a paradox considering two-thirds of the fiber produced in the country are exported every year.

Developing fabric and dyeing segments would be the key factor in the growth of the garment and textile industry. Industrial zones specialising in dyeing and cloth production have to be established. Attracting foreign direct investment in the industry is also necessary for its development. Most garment and textile companies in Vietnam have to hire foreign experts in dyeing, which pushes up their production costs. So investing in the training of human resources is vital to developing the dyeing segment.