Newsletter 27 of 2019

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           Newsletter No. 27                                                     19 July 2019

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Proudly South African and SACTWU respond to imported formal suits worn by Bafana Bafana en route to and from Egypt

Proudly South African and the Southern African Clothing & Textile Workers Union (SACTWU) have noted with dismay the photos of Bafana Bafana travelling to and from Egypt for their recent AFCON campaign wearing wholly imported suits sponsored by Damat.

Proudly South African has already begun to engage with some of our sporting codes including SARU and national body SASCOC on the issue of imported apparel. We understand the financial imperatives of sourcing clothing sponsors for on and off the field wear and the need to acknowledge sponsors on social media and in photo opportunities, but we condemn the choice of imported items where there are quality equivalents here in South Africa.

Whilst technical specs may require some kit items to be manufactured overseas, all track suits, and formal and informal wear of the teams and technical staff can be sourced in South Africa. We are asking the sporting codes, when entering into sponsorship discussions, to make reasonable, partial localisation a condition of the contract.

The current economic climate and high unemployment rate, including the high number of jobs that remain at risk, requires all our support. National sporting teams receive enormous support from South Africans and then we call on them at least to support the economic agenda of the country. On the specific matter of the Bafana Bafana foreign suits, SACTWU and Proudly South African call on SAFA immediately to engage local suit manufacturers to find a local alternative. If President Ramaphosa can go to great lengths to source local suits as in his State of the Nation Address example, why can SAFA not do so?

Proudly South African will be convening an indaba of sports administrators, the Department of Sports, Arts & Culture and clothing manufacturers who sponsor our national teams and local clubs in order to find a workable solution that will benefit our local clothing and textile industry which continues to suffer from such examples of poor procurement choices.

For more information on SACTWU visit www.sactwu.org.za or contact their Secretary General, Mr Andre Kriel on andrek@sactwu.org.za

UK, Ghana sign strategic partnership agreement

British high commissioner to Ghana Iain Walker recently pledged the UK Government’s support to the Kumasi Metropolitan Assembly (KMA) to make Kumasi a leading industrial hub of West Africa as both the countries signed a new strategic partnership agreement focusing on six economic areas of mutual benefits under the UK-Ghana Business Council (UK-GBC).

The agreement, signed at a regional business forum in Kumasi, covers six sectors: agribusiness, extractive, garment-textile, digital, pharmaceutical and financial services, according to a press release from the British High Commission in Accra.

It is under three themes made up of domestic revenue mobilisation, ease of doing business and infrastructure.

The forum focused on the Ashanti Region where the UK Government had supported some major projects, including the Kejetia market, the expansion of the Kumasi Airport and the construction of Bekwai hospital.  F2F

Kenya’s cotton output likely to triple over 2018 figures

Cotton production in Kenya this year is expected to triple over last year’s figures, marking one of the highest yields in the last decade, according to the Fibre Crops Directorate, which foresees production to rise from 10,672 tonnes realised last year to 30,000 tonnes. Increased production is being attributed to better investment and incentives to farmers.

The high cotton harvest is the result of investment on farmers to spur production in line with the government’s Big Four agenda, said Naomi Kamau, head of the directorate.

However, production will be slightly less than the projection because of harsh weather, she said.

The projection of 39,000 bales of lint this year has been revised down to 30,000 because of drought, primarily in the eastern region, a Nairobi-based English-language business newspaper quoted Kamau as saying.

The directorate has also created a ready market for farmers by having them sign contracts with ginneries, which ensures the crop is purchased immediately after being harvested.

Cotton production has been falling in the country since the 1980s with Kenya relying on imports to bridge the deficit.

The country imports over half of the required quantity of cotton to keep its factories running. There are about four active ginneries in the country now in Meru, Baringo, Makueni and Kitui.  F2F

CBN makes efforts to revive Nigerian textile-garment units

As part of its commitment to ensure that at least 20 textile and garment factories start full operations before this year end, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) is soliciting partnerships to fructify this goal. The apex bank has engaged in interactive sessions across the country that drew representatives from various textile trade unions.

The unions include the National Union of Textile, Garment and Tailoring Workers of Nigeria (NUTGTWN), private sector unions affiliated to the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), the Trade Union Congress (TUC) and the United Labour Congress (ULC).

Citing the $4 billion spent annually on import of textile materials, CBN governor Godwin Emefiele expressed concern that the country loses $2 billion annually to textile smuggling and export, according to Nigerian media reports.

He said the Textile Revival and Implementation Committee (TRIC), comprising representatives from CBN, five states involved in the production of cotton, federal ministries of power, water resources, finance and Nigeria Customs Service, have the responsibility of resuscitating the country’s cotton belt, identifying textile clusters, improving cotton production nationwide and boosting power supply to textile firms across the clusters.

The forums closely followed three critical steps previous taken by the apex bank – adding textile to the 41 foreign exchange restriction list; the unequivocal threat to blacklist anyone or organisation involved in smuggling textile and recently the CBN set up a committee for the revival of the country’s cotton, textile and garment industry, with the mandate to revive a minimum of 50 textile firms by 2023. However, in the short-term, the apex bank plans to revive 20 textile firms within the 2019 fiscal period.

CBN director of corporate communications Isaac Okoroafor said of the 180 textile mills in the country, only 15 are functional and even those are doing so at low capacity. He said the industry currently supports 20,000 jobs from 550,000 hitherto employed in the sector.

He said CBN has decided to take the bull by the horn to revive the textile sector with the identification of over 100,000 cotton farmers who would be supported with the best seedlings and funded to support the textile value chain.  F2F

Did you know……..

Top New York Fashion Week designers share their pre-show MOs — and how they get into their creative groove.

Designer Christian Cowan

Designer Christian Cowan (left) attributes his look worn by Paris Hilton (right) for helping to make his mark in the fashion world

Cowan’s penchant for “extra” manifests itself in crazy-fun costumey pieces, from over-the-knee glitter cowboy boots (recently worn by Kylie Jenner) to sequined tuxedos and gigantic hats fit for a (drama) queen.

What’s your go-to song to get models pumped up before they walk?
George Michael’s “Freedom!” is always a safe choice, but if not that, then Britney Spears’ “Toxic” is sure to fire up the backstage (vibe).

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