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September 1, 2020

Top stories on just-style in August ..

Top stories on just-style in August included a look at the coronavirus pandemic's impact on the apparel industry and its supply chain, digital innovation from Reebok and Crystal International, statistics on global textiles and clothing trade, the EU's withdrawal of Cambodia's trade benefits, and an interview with Turkish textile and garment producer Yesim Tekstil.

Top stories on just-style in August included a look at the coronavirus pandemic’s impact on the apparel industry and its supply chain, digital innovation from Reebok and Crystal International, statistics on global textiles and clothing trade, the EU’s withdrawal of Cambodia’s trade benefits, and an interview with Turkish textile and garment producer Yesim Tekstil.

1: Five ways world textile and apparel trade is changing The latest World Trade Statistical Review 2020 newly released by the World Trade Organization (WTO) offers an insight into fashion companies’ evolving production and sourcing strategies – and points to new patterns of world textiles and apparel trade in 2019. Here Dr Sheng Lu, associate professor in the Department of Fashion and Apparel Studies at the University of Delaware, sets out five key trends to watch.

2: Marks & Spencer to cull 7,000 roles as Covid bites UK clothing, home and food retailer Marks & Spencer is to make 7,000 job cuts across management and stores over the next three months as it looks to address the material shift in trade caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.

3: What happens when the dust settles? Stretching the safety net for India’s invisible workers Covid-19 is a wake-up call to improve protections for India’s apparel sector workers, including the informal home-based women labourers who remain an invisible part of the supply chain.

4: Digital map shows Bangladesh factory closures since pandemic  A digital mapping technology that tracks the development of readymade garment factories in Bangladesh has revealed 9% of facilities surveyed have permanently closed following the Covid-19 pandemic.

5: Yesim Tekstil upbeat as brands look closer for do-it-all suppliers Despite the upheaval of the global coronavirus crisis, the future looks bright for Turkish textile and garment mega-producer Yesim Tekstil with European brands increasingly seeking vertically integrated suppliers, sustainability and options to near-shore production. 

6: Progress on responsible sourcing pact for Uzbekistan cotton Plans appear to be making progress for a new agreement that would re-open Uzbekistan’s cotton sector to the international market while protecting labour rights.

7: Latest US apparel trade data points to sourcing shake-up Mid-way through 2020 and the impact of the global coronavirus on US apparel supplier countries – and their unit prices – is starting to become clear.

8: Garment workers underpaid by up to US$5.8bn during pandemic A new report has claimed garment and footwear factory workers globally could have been underpaid by as much as US$5.79bn for the months of March, April and May.

9: UK government aid to support fashion supply chains The UK Government has launched a new programme to help retailers including Marks & Spencer, Primark, Monsoon and VF Corporation to strengthen their global supply chains by supporting workers in developing countries during the coronavirus pandemic.

10: How retailers can prioritise sustainability during Covid-19 As apparel brands and retailers rebuild their post-pandemic supply chains, now is the perfect time to rethink how they can embed sustainability into their development, sourcing and distribution decisions, says Mark Burstein, president at NGC Software.

11: US apparel imports show signs of recovery in June US apparel imports surged in June compared with May and all ten of the major supplier nations reported month-on-month shipment volume increases. But the year-on-year figures told a very different tale – shipment volumes slid as Central America and India bore the brunt of Covid-19 continuing to wreak havoc on supply chains. 

12: Crystal International scales up virtual sampling Hong Kong based manufacturing giant Crystal International Group has been scaling up its use of 3D virtual sampling, and expects to use the technology in 80% of the products that it develops by next year.

13: US hits China garment maker with detention order The US has issued a new import detention order on garments produced by the Hero Vast Group that are suspected of being manufactured using prison labour in China.

14: Pandemic and trade war top concerns for US fashion firms  The economic and personal impact of the Covid-19 global pandemic, and the protectionist trade policy agenda in the US are the biggest concerns facing today’s US fashion industry executives. Unsurprisingly, they are contributing to a more conservative outlook for the future.

15: EU withdrawal of Cambodia’s duty benefits takes effect Despite months of objections by Cambodia’s garment and footwear sectors, the European Union’s (EU) decision to partially withdraw the country’s preferential access to the EU market under the Everything But Arms (EBA) trade scheme is now in effect.

16: Investors urged to step up due diligence on Xinjiang links Investors are being urged to take steps to identify, prevent and mitigate risks in portfolio companies to ensure they have no direct links to human rights abuses in China’s Xinjiang region.

17: Missguided launches behind-the-scenes TV series UK fast fashion retailer Missguided is giving consumers a glimpse behind the scenes of its operations with a new four-part television series.

18: Reebok puts consumers in control of footwear production Global fitness brand Reebok is rolling out a new digital platform that acts to minimise waste by enabling US consumers to collectively determine whether a particular footwear design should enter production.

19: Pandemic could shrink US apparel sales by 50% in 2020 US textiles and apparel sales could shrink by more than 50% this year due to the coronavirus outbreak, top executives say, but fabric makers are set to fare better than retailers amid a booming personal protective equipment (PPE) shift. 

20: Major brands linked to “union-busting” factories A number of factories producing garments for several major apparel brands have been accused of exploiting the coronavirus pandemic as an opportunity to sack workers affiliated to unions.

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