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Apparel supply concerns hit as coronavirus impact builds

17 February 2020 | Michelle Russell

Novel coronavirus (now officially named 2019-nCo) is continuing to shake up China’s supply chain. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), as of 17 February 2020 there have been 71,329 confirmed cases in 26 countries – with by far the majority (70,635) in China. ... read more

China coronavirus impact continues to evolve

10 February 2020 | Leonie Barrie

Top stories on just-style last week were again dominated by the novel coronavirus outbreak in China, with a look at what it means for US apparel and retail, how it could impact China's polyester production, and concerns regarding cargo capacity and delays.... read more

Coronavirus and its impact on fashion supply chains

3 February 2020 | Hannah Abdulla

The world economy in general, and the apparel industry in particular, depend on hugely complex, globalised, supply chains. So what are the consequences of the new 'Wuhan novel coronavirus'? And what is the potential impact of the coronavirus on global fashion retailers and their supply chains?... read more

US-China trade deal brings limited benefits for apparel firms

27 January 2020 | Beth Wright

The 'Phase One' trade agreement signed between the US and China is a step in the right direction, but offers little relief to apparel firms in the ongoing trade conflict.... read more

US apparel imports down four months in a row

13 January 2020 | Leonie Barrie

The volume of US apparel imports fell for the fourth consecutive month in November, with a 20% drop in shipments from largest supplier China. The figures suggest early stockpiling in the run-up to the holiday period as retailers moved to bring in merchandise ahead of new tariffs.... read more

Global apparel prices on the rise

23 December 2019 | Leonie Barrie

One effect of the US-China trade war is the rising price of apparel imports – not just from China, but the rest of the world too. ... read more

Progress on trade deals welcomed

19 December 2019 | Michelle Russell

The United States and China have reached an agreement on a Phase One trade deal in a move that will delay new tariffs that were due to take effect over the weekend and halve the rates currently imposed on most apparel and textile products imported from China.... read more

Slowing economic growth weighs on 2020 sentiment

3 December 2019 | Leonie Barrie

As we move into the final month of the year, it’s not surprising that anxiety and concern appears to be the prevailing mood across the fashion sector for 2020. A new report offers the ten trends set to shape the industry during the course of the year.... read more

Sustainability is fast fashion’s Achilles heel

26 November 2019 | Hannah Abdulla

Two aspects of sustainability – environmental impact and worker well-being – are often buried under greenwashed marketing and feel-good statistics; the seeds of where fast fashion's demise have taken root.... read more

Vietnam's textile-garment plan hits hurdles

19 November 2019 | Michelle Russell

domestically-made textile inputs remains a major problem that continues to hinder clothing manufacturers in the country.... read more

Tommy Hilfiger eyes 100% 3D apparel design by 2022

8 November 2019 | Beth Wright

The Tommy Hilfiger brand is aiming for its its spring 2022 collections to be completely designed using 3D technology, in a move that builds on its target to digitise its end-to-end value chain.... read more

Levi Strauss leads on green supply chain in China

4 November 2019 | Beth Wright

Sustainability remains top of mind for the industry with Levi Strauss, Adidas and C&A ranked amongst the leading brands to have made progress in environmental supply chain management in China over the last year, with the apparel sector one of the most active industries when it comes to taking action.... read more

UK clothing exports to US to be hit by further 25% duties

28 October 2019 | Hannah Abdulla

Cashmere jumpers, anoraks and swimwear made in the UK and exported to the US are among products being hit by an extra 25% tariff as part of the ongoing dispute between the US and the EU over aircraft subsidies.... read more

New US trade trends taking shape?

14 October 2019 | Leonie Barrie

In a reversal of trends seen in July, the three Central American countries that are the largest suppliers of clothing to the US – Mexico, El Salvador and Honduras – saw a dramatic fall in shipments in August.... read more

Weaving a new vision for US denim

7 October 2019 | Beth Wright

The closure of the last US selvedge denim mill two years ago might have marked the end of an era. But thanks to the vision of Daniel Feibus and his team, the original looms have found a new home at Vidalia Mills as part of plans to build a cutting-edge, transparent and sustainable denim manufacturing chain in the United States.... read more

Are low-labour rate countries being victimised by their customers?

30 September 2019 | Hannah Abdulla

There is a common belief that low-labour-rate countries are forever being victimised by their customers, who force the factories to accept unacceptably low FOB (free on board) prices. An analysis from just-style suggests this has never made sense, less so now than ever before.... read more

Rwanda gearing up for a slice of sourcing action

24 September 2019 | Michelle Russell

For years now, Ethiopia has garnered the spotlight for its ambitions to become the world's next big destination for textile and fashion production. But another East African country – Rwanda – is also gearing up for a slice of the action, with the country's newest export-led garment factory quickly making up for lost time.... read more

Forced labour links to China raw materials

16 September 2019 | Leonie Barrie

New research suggests all supply chains linked to China are at risk of having an association with forced labour, since raw materials such as cotton produced in the Xinjiang region – notorious for its links to ongoing human rights abuses – are being used in manufacturing in other countries.... read more

Central America leads US apparel imports surge

9 September 2019 | Hannah Abdulla

The volume of apparel imported into the US saw a double-digit growth surge month-on-month in July as retailers stocked up for the back-to-school season and rushed to bring merchandise into the country ahead of scheduled tariff hikes. Growth in shipment volumes from El Salvador and Honduras was highest during the month, with China also booking double-digit gains but Bangladesh seeing a decline.... read more

US and China follow through on tariff threat

2 September 2019 | Beth Wright

The US and China have both gone ahead with threats to impose new levies on another tranche of imports – with the US move meaning around US$31bn in textile, apparel and home textile products from China are now subject to an additional tariff of 15%. ... read more

US-China tariff turmoil continues

27 August 2019 | Leonie Barrie

Ongoing US-China tariff turmoil continued to dominate just-style last week, culminating in President Trump tweeting that new tariffs due to take effect in September and December on Chinese imports – including all clothing and footwear – will now start at 15%. ... read more

How brands are mitigating the potential impact of new China tariffs

12 August 2019 | Beth Wright

US apparel brands and retailers may be caught between higher costs and raising prices when it comes to navigating an extra 10% tariff on clothing and footwear imported from China from the beginning of next month – but analysts suggest some are managing to mitigate the potential impacts.... read more

Looming US tariffs on China apparel

5 August 2019 | Leonie Barrie

US fashion and footwear brands, retailers and importers were rocked last week after a surprise tweet from US President Donald Trump announced that a punitive 10% tariff will be imposed on $300bn worth of US imports from China – including all textiles, apparel and footwear – from 1 September. ... read more

Where in the world is worst for worker rights?

15 July 2019 | Leonie Barrie

An annual survey of violations of human and trade union rights ranks key apparel producing nations including Bangladesh, Cambodia, Colombia, Guatemala, the Philippines and Turkey among the ten worst countries in the world for worker rights.... read more

US imports from Bangladesh and Cambodia jump in May

8 July 2019 | Hannah Abdulla

Bangladesh and Cambodia both enjoyed a boost in apparel shipments to the US during May – at around the same time US President Donald Trump said he was mulling a tariff hike on all incoming Chinese goods, suggesting retailers and brands are moving forward with plans to cut back on how much product they source from the Southeast Asian giant.... read more

The next step in responsible sourcing

1 July 2019 | Beth Wright

An overhaul of the auditing process on factory safety and working conditions is long overdue – and a new initiative could offer the solution. The Social & Labour Convergence Program's Converged Assessment Framework enables apparel brands and retailers to leverage one set of verified social and labour data, reduce the amount of money spent on duplicated auditing, and instead free up resources to improve efficiency and factory working conditions. SLCP executive director Janet Mensink, and Peter Higgins, senior director of global responsible sourcing at VF Corp, tell just-style more.... read more

UK government “out of step" on fashion regulation

24 June 2019 | Leonie Barrie

“Not good enough” and “out of step with the public” are among responses to the UK government’s plan to tackle the growing environmental footprint of the fashion industry – and its apparent rejection of recommendations set out by the Environmental Audit Committee earlier this year.... read more

Trump drops Mexico tariffs amid deal on migration

17 June 2019 | Hannah Abdulla

US President Donald Trump has "indefinitely suspended" the recently proposed tariff hike on Mexican imports after the two parties reached a signed agreement.... read more

New project to benefit garment workers in Ethiopia

10 June 2019 | Beth Wright

The growing interest of international brands to source garments from Ethiopia provides an opportunity to develop the sector in a sustainable way, the founders of a new project in the country say. Launched last week, the new EU-funded project, Bottom Up, is designed to benefit some 2,000 cotton farmers, 2,200 rural workers, and 17,000 garment workers in Ethiopia by creating a sustainable, transparent and inclusive value chain.... read more

Mexico tariff move "unfathomable" and "concerning"

3 June 2019 | Leonie Barrie

In a surprise move late last week, the US announced new tariffs on all imports from Mexico – starting next Monday (10 June). The tariffs are in response to the flow of migrants crossing from Mexico into America, and will begin at 5%, rising to 25% by 1 October. Groups representing companies across the entire US apparel, footwear and textile supply chain have criticised the decision as "unfathomable."... read more

Major brands urge Trump to pull footwear from tariff list

30 May 2019 | Hannah Abdulla

A coalition of 173 US footwear brands, including Nike and Adidas, is urging US President Donald Trump to remove footwear from the proposed tariffs list on goods imported from China, saying it would be "catastrophic" for companies, consumers and the American economy as a whole.... read more

Trump moves forward on tariff threats

20 May 2019 | Beth Wright

The ongoing tariff war between the US and China took another turn last week in a move US apparel and footwear retailers and importers have been dreading, as the Trump administration moved forward on threats to impose a 25% tariff on nearly all Chinese exports to the United States.... read more

US-China trade war takes a turn for the worse

13 May 2019 | Leonie Barrie

Just as it seemed the ongoing US-China trade war was heading into the final round of talks, US President Donald Trump last week escalated the dispute by hiking tariffs on $200bn worth of Chinese exports – and threatening to extend the tariffs to cover all US imports from China. Tariffs on the targeted exports increased from 10% to 25% on Friday 10 May.... read more

Primark defends position over unfair dismissal allegations in Bangladesh

7 May 2019 | Hannah Abdulla

Value fashion retailer Primark has defended its position following allegations that workers at its supplier factories in Bangladesh were dismissed for taking part in protests over low wages – and says it will compensate workers whose contracts were terminated unfairly. ... read more

Reflecting on Rana Plaza

29 April 2019 | Leonie Barrie

Last week marked the sixth anniversary of the Rana Plaza building collapse in Bangladesh – with just-style taking a step-by-step look at the changes that have been made to improve worker and building safety within the country's ready-made garment industry.... read more