Sri Lankan clothing maker Jinadasa Garments has set up its third production unit in Africa.

The new plant, which operates under the name of California Link (Ghana) Ltd, expands the company's two existing operations in Kenya and Ghana.

The new factory has an installed capacity of 750 machines, employs over 1500 workers, and represents a total investment of US$3.0 million.

The company says the new unit has been set up to take advantage of duty free access to the US under the Africa Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA). It is just two weeks sailing time to the US west coast.

"We have plans to double this capacity in a year," the company said in a statement. "This is an ideal opportunity to compete with increased competition from cheap Chinese producers."

Jinadasa Garments makes over one million pieces a month in 10 plants around the world. Production includes sleepwear, sportswear, lingerie, suits and blouses.

The company also has strategic partnerships with John Stuart Bennett in the USA and Marsylka Manufacturing in the UK.