Blog: Leonie BarrieExporters back India's budget but seek more

Leonie Barrie | 21 July 2014

Indian apparel exporters are seeking a series of favourable policy decisions from the new Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led government, including export subsidies to offset import duties imposed by the EU while talks continue towards an EU-India free trade agreement.

Manufacturers have also told just-style they welcomed this month's budget announcement to help exports of readymade garments by increasing the duty-free entitlement for imports of trimmings, embellishments and a range of other items, from 3% to 5% of the value of their exports.

Nicaragua's apparel industry, meanwhile, is expected to grow 8% to $1.5bn this year, fuelled by rising exports to the US. But while the numbers are encouraging, there are fears they may not last long. Like elsewhere in Central America, Nicaragua is fretting that the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) will bring huge losses to its apparel sector.

Retailers and consumers are being urged by animal rights activists to boycott merino wool products after an investigation is said to have exposed a series of violations in the US and Australia. Video footage shows sheep being injured and killed during shearing, export and mulesing.

Supply chain issues at Canadian yoga wear brand Lululemon Athletica appear to be resolving, analysts say, after a study of 3,800 stock keeping units (SKUs) on the Lululemon e-commerce website showed full-priced sell-through and in-stock positions have improved since January.

Changing shopping habits are seen as key to moves unveiled last week by US clothing and footwear company Wolverine Worldwide, which is shuttering 140 stores as part of a strategic realignment. Closing unprofitable retail locations will enable the retailer to reduce infrastructure costs and focus on building its omni-channel offer instead.

And the new CEO at Mothercare has outlined plans to turn around the fortunes of the struggling baby and children's goods retailer. While latest results suggest the company's fortunes appear to have picked up slightly of late, with better than expected full-year results and improved domestic like-for-like sales, there is still much work to be done.

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