BULL’S EYE: Mr Patel’s adventures in the rag trade

Business

BULL’S EYE: Mr Patel’s adventures in the rag trade

Minister of trade and industry will lay out his plans for the garment industry in September ... we wish him well

Jeremy Thomas

It will be fascinating to see what comes of Ebrahim Patel’s grand designs to revive traditional areas of SA manufacturing. The trade and industry minister will present a master plan on the clothing, textiles and footwear industry in September. Next on Patel’s list are the poultry, automotive, steel and sugar industries.

SA fashion retailers will be keen to see Patel stimulate a garment industry that, for all the damage done by Chinese imports and outsourcing by local firms to Chinese factories, still thrives in pockets – notably in the Western Cape and KwaZulu-Natal. 

The minister doesn’t need to tell the likes of The Foschini Group (https://www.sharenet.co.za/v3/quickshare.php?scode=TFG) (TFG) or Mr Price (https://www.sharenet.co.za/v3/quickshare.php?scode=MRP) about the benefits of local production – they’ve been giving much of their manufacturing to SA’s cut, make and trim (CMT) specialists for years. The only bother is that most homegrown enterprises operate almost at a backyard level, independently, without any logistics support. ..

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