Madagascar back on the apparel sourcing radar
Madagascar all but fell off the sourcing radar when it lost its duty-free privileges to the US at the beginning of 2010. But a change of fortunes in the last two years is now seeing its apparel exports bounce back.
The devastating impact that political instability and the loss of trade benefits can have on an apparel manufacturing country is exemplified by Madagascar, the island off the southeast coast of Africa that all but fell off the sourcing radar when it lost its duty-free privileges to the United States at the beginning of 2010. But a change of fortunes in the last two years is now seeing its apparel exports bounce back with a vengeance.
Plans are in the pipeline for a special economic zone dedicated to the production of apparel and textiles in Madagascar to take advantage of a renewed interest in sourcing from the country.
Last year all eyes at Origin Africa were on host country Ethiopia as an emerging sourcing hub for international apparel groups. This year attention switched to the return of Madagascar to the apparel export stage, with the island nation off the southeast coast of Africa bouncing back after the US reinstated its AGOA (African Growth and Opportunity Act) beneficiary status in 2014.
Africa has undeniable advantages that make it attractive as a potential destination for large volume, low cost, commodity garments, according to Chris Wynne-Potts, CEO at African Merchandising Services.
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