Apparel Benefitting From US-China Trade War

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Bangladesh's garment sector is set to receive more US orders, and the US-China trade war continues. Viyellatex Group, a leading Bangladeshi exporter, ships mainly to European countries.

Three American buyers, who had folded their business in Bangladesh two years ago, are set to place bulk orders, said David Hasanat, chairman and managing director of Viyellatex Group, while withholding the retailers' identities.

These three are not the only ones as many other US-based clothing retailers are now queuing up at his factory as China has already turned expensive for them, he said, adding that the trade war has been the impetus needed to re-route buyers to Bangladesh.

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Three out of every 10 buyers Hasanat now serves are from the US – a development of the last six months. The numbers will increase further if the Trump administration finally scraps the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), Hasanat said. Earlier, many Chinese garment companies set up factories in Mexico to avail the duty privilege under NAFTA. But now, the Chinese investors are pulling out from Mexico.

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Bangladesh has also been benefitting in the purchase of cotton as prices decreased 10% after China imposed high duty on the import of the natural fibre from the US. China imports US$ 1 billion worth of the fibre from the US in a year. Siddiqur Rahman, president of the Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association confirmed that work orders have increased compared to last year.

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