Matchmaking events for SMEs to expand and open to new markets are on the go with Business Beyond Borders. For all our future and past participants, as well as stakeholders and everyone interested in our initiative, we continue with our ‘Road to…” blog posts. This week, and continuing the preparation for our next matchmaking event for SMEs and Clusters at Texworld Paris, we take a look at the situation regarding Market Access for the textile and clothing industry.
The EU textile and clothing industry is responsible for 2.3 billion jobs, with over 110.000 enterprises operating in this sector. It is also the world’s second largest exporter of textile and clothing products, and a relevant player in the international market. Textile and clothing exports are key for industry growth within and outside the European Single Market – exports to U.S and China, in particular, have seen a constant growth in the last few years.
As such, access to third markets is vital to continue the expansion of the EU textile and clothing industry and foster its growth. The exports on this European sector represent 30% of the world market but, even though many actions have been taken to improve and facilitate exports, there is still room for improvement.
The European industry has made large investments to improve its efficiency, quality, creativity and competitiveness. It currently seeks to continue this trajectory through bilateral agreements to supporting the European industry’s competitiveness and access to third markets.
We refer to some of Euratex’s findings for market access in the textile and clothing industry, concerning equally recognised high-level standards regarding EU-US exports:
- Such measures would preserve high levels of consumer protection;
- Different test measures mean higher costs for entrepreneurs;
- Intellectual property in fashion protected in EU is not guaranteed in the EU. Zero customs duties will allow the EU companies to develop exports and create jobs in Europe.