TRALAC - Trade Law Centre

South Africa: Local textile firms to skip SA fair

Tuesday, 10 February 2009

Source: Business Day Africa

Textile firms have been locked out of business opportunities following a decision by manufacturers not to attend a major fair in South Africa.

Buyers from the US and Europe will attend the April 21 fair organized by the USAid Southern Africa Global Competitiveness Hub, which was expected to boost the local textile sector.

However, this will not happen since local textile manufactures claim that their lobby Kenya Association of Manufacturers (KAM), kept them in the dark regarding the South African textiles trade fair.

“We are not attending this trade fair because we didn’t even hear about it. We will miss out on the business transactions with our buyers out there” said Suresh Vora of the United Textile Industry.

The decision to skip the event has thrown away a potential opportunity for the textile sector to resuscitate itself after the slump which came after the post-election violence of 2008.

Figures from the Agoa website indicate that exports to the US have dropped from a value of Sh21 billion in 2005 to Sh4.4 billion last year.