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Bangladesh - November 16, 2022

Traders fear crisis of winter clothes

Winter knocking at the door

Golam Mostafa Jibon: Country’s garment manufacturers and traders are in fear of facing immense troubleduring this winter due to sudden price hike of raw materialsused in producing winter clothes as well as dollar crisis.
Many of the manufacturers have already reduced production for increasing the cost of importing raw materials. They are also worried about the poor production as well as the demand of the winter season.
The garment sector is now one of the pillars of the country’s economy. Garments made in thousands of factories in the country including Dhaka, Gazipur, Narayanganj andChattogram are being exported to different countries. They earn thousands of crores of Taka by producing and exporting those goods.
In some areas of the country, clothes are being made for the domestic needs of the country. The traders claimed that, they provide the clothes made in the country. Especially Eid and winter season clothes are mostly made there. And they spend the rest of the year with the profit of the sale of that time.
During a visit to various garment industry zones, this correspondent found that, traders are preparing for the winter season which is about to start. However, the increase in the price of the dollar is the impression of worry and disappointment on the face of most traders. On the other hand, the price of raw materials has increased due to the increase in the value of the dollar, while the import duty has also increased. Along with this, the price of fuel increased and other expenses including transportation also increased. But there is no order in that proportion, they said.
The traders and producers of different garment industries said that, the prices of cloth, buttons, chains, poly, stickers and other items used in making clothes have already increased. Production costs on the same garment increased by up to 30 percent compared to the previous year. As a result, they have no option to increase their prices at wholesale. Traders are also worried about whether the wholesalers will buy at higher prices in the overall economic reality of the country. Most of the traders, who import clothes from India, Thailand, China have decided to import less clothes this time.
Cloth importer Jahangir Hasan said, “Last year we spent Tk 90 lakh to buy clothes worth 1 lakh dollars. Now we have to spend Tk 1.20 crore to buy that dress worth 1 lakh dollar. Along with the purchase of clothes, the tax rate has also increased. Due to which, the price of clothes has automatically increased. For this reason, we have decided to import less. He said, it is understood that our business will become very difficult this winter. We arerunning business now just to survive.”
It can be seen around the factories, 10 machines are running where 15 machines were running earlier. Everyone is waiting for the dollar to fall. A factory owner named Amir Hossain said that. pasting, which used to be bought for Tk 50, is now Tk 75, fusing Tk 1,200 now has to be bought at Tk 1,700. Yarn of Tk 20 has become Tk 25. Button of Tk 30 has become Tk 50.
Factory owner Amir Hossain said, “Even if the price of raw materials has increased, we are not able to charge more prices for making clothes from the showrooms. We are now struggling to run the factory.”
Jamal Uddin, another businessman, said that due to the crisis of dollar, the price of some clothes has increased so much that it is beyond the affordability of many buyers. If we cannot provide products within the consumer’s affordability, we cannot do business.
When talking to Muslim Dhali, General Secretary of Keraniganj Garments Village and owner of Muslim Collection, he said that the price of yarn has increased due to the increase in the dollar price. Many have stopped buying clothes. Many have reduced production.
He also said, everyone is waiting for the price dropping. The traders of Islampur are also not collecting cloth. As a result, we are not procuring new raw material. Many people are unable to work. But now is the peak time to make clothes for winter.
Muslim Dhali said, some people are making winter clothes by buying dye and yarn at higher prices. But if the dollar price falls later, they will face losses.
President of Keraniganj Garments Traders and Shop Owners Association Swadhin Sheikh said that, “The demand for clothes has already decreased among the common people due to the increase in the prices of daily necessities. On top of that, there has becomestandstill situation in the garment sector to increase the dollar price. There is concern about clothing production as well as winter demand.”

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