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NEWS & RESEARCH FROM THE AFRICAN CONTINENT
(#21 / 2018 - 7 August 2018)
www.africantextilesandapparel.com
In 2014 SACU’s Member States exported US$361m worth of apparel (HS61 & 62) to the United States
In 2014 Lesotho exported US$290.5m worth of apparel (HS61 & 62) to the United States
In 2014 Swaziland exported US$55m worth of apparel (HS61 & 62) to the United States
 
NEWS

ZIMBABWE – BI-LATERAL FREE TRADE AGREEMENT WITH SOUTH AFRICA TO TERMINATE, 3 August 2018
The Government of South Africa has given notice of its intention to terminate the Zimbabwe-South Africa Bilateral Trade Agreement. The trade agreement will be terminated with effect from 20 November 2018. South Africa have indicated that the Agreement is being terminated in favour of the SADC Trade Protocol on Trade, which is more comprehensive and gives better preferences than the Bilateral Trade Agreement. READ HERE >> (page 3)

 
ETHIOPIA – TAIWANESE FIRMS IN ETHIOPIA, 3 August 2018
There is not a single stretch of smooth pavement along the hour-plus journey from Hawassa Airport to the Hawassa Industrial Park. The bumpy, muddy road has left our vehicle’s undercarriage similarly pockmarked from the constant abrasion. Passing through rhinoceros and great African crane habitats as we approach Lake Hawassa, the local farming population still resides in earthen dwellings made from straw and mud. Yet this place has become a new promised land for the global textile industry, attracting the likes of major global brands such as the PVH Group (US), Uniqlo (Japan), Zara (Spain), Decathlon (France), and Under Armour (US) in recent years as companies look to invest and source suppliers in Ethiopia. Consequently, the supply chains of Taiwanese, Chinese, and Korean textile and apparel manufacturers have all put down roots here. READ HERE >>


ETHIOPIA – DEALING WITH ITS CUSTOMS ADMINISTRATION, 2 August 2018
Businessmen who have to deal with Ethiopia’s customs system like to joke that if you get a permit to import yellow paintbrushes, make sure every last one is yellow. If an orange brush slips into the batch, let alone a red one, forget it - your shipment will be tied up for months. Ethiopia has achieved one of Africa’s fastest growth rates over the past decade, averaging up to 10% a year. But investors complain about its stifling and antiquated socialist bureaucracy, where the default answer from fearful civil servants is “no” and importing something as mundane as cotton can take 6 or 12 months. Now they hope things might change. Since taking office in April 2018, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed has made peace with Eritrea, freed political prisoners and promised to liberalise the economy. READ HERE >>


NAMIBIA – INDEPENDENT SCHOOL UNIFORM RETAILER CLOSES, 3 August 2018
Well known Windhoek school uniforms retailer Karseboom Namibia this week closed for business after being in operation for 60 years. The company's manager partly attributed the development to the current economic situation in the country. The general manager of Dinapama (SEE>>) said retail companies have a much better chance of survival if they invest in the local economy, instead of importing most of their uniforms from South Africa and elsewhere. “Karseboom and many other such retailers in Namibia are importing stock from South Africa, but we are manufacturing here because we have a targeted intervention strategy to grow our local economy. The money we make is spent here and beefs up the economy,” said the Dinapama general manager. READ HERE >>


EGYPT – TRADE UNIONS & DISNEY, 1 August 2018
The first labour elections to be held in Egypt in 12 years came to a close at in early June. However, while state officials championed the elections as transparent and fair, not much changed in the composition of labor blocs, with the state-affiliated Egyptian Trade Union Federation (ETUF) emerging from the process effectively in control of the unions. In fact, the exclusion of non-state aligned labor candidates from the electoral process meant that the majority of those who ran were ETUF figures. The story of this year’s labor elections starts with a 2016 World Bank report on governance. While it reflected marginal improvements in the indicators for control over corruption, government efficiency, political stability and rule of law, it also showed that Egypt had regressed in the indicators for organisational and regulatory quality. In February 2017, The Walt Disney Company informed the United States' government that they would stop importing textiles from 28 Egyptian companies, valued at US$150m a year, due to the indicators posted in the World Bank report and Egypt’s ineligibility for the ILO’s BetterWork program. READ HERE >>


KENYA – GARMENT INDUSTRY COMPETITIVENESS, 31 July 2018
The Kenya Government is exploring ways of reducing the cost of production for the struggling textile industry. To this end, the Kenya State Department of Technical & Vocational Education & Training (TVET) is spearheading roundtable discussions with industry stakeholders to establish how to embed the sector into President Uhuru Kenyatta’s Big Four agenda. TVET Principal Secretary Kevit Desai said the meetings would explore the seed-to-shop challenges that limit growth in the sector, including the high cost of energy as well as lack of markets for industry players. The Sh1.5bn (US$15m) World Bank sponsored African Centre of Excellence in Textile housed at Kisumu Polytechnic, which is set to admit students from East Africa from next year, is seen as key in the drive by the East African Community countries to phase out second-hand clothes beginning next year. PS Desai said the centre would also help in research and innovation promotion. READ HERE >>


KENYA - NEW COTTON GINNERY AND 'COTTON ON' RETAILER, 5 August 2018
Australian mining company, Base Titanium, has partnered with local farmers in Kwale County to lead in the construction of a ginnery in the area which will be a landmark project for the revival of cotton farming in Kenya. The ginnery will be located within a Business Park in the county, with the entire project aimed at improving farming, ginning and garment production in the country. The ginnery will support the miners’ cotton farming initiative launched in the area in 2014 under its community development programmes. The project which commenced with a small number of farmers has grown consistently with 600 farmers growing cotton this season. Base has connected Pavi to export markets which include a direct link with Australian apparel company Cotton On who purchase the cotton directly. Cotton from the 2014, 2015 and 2016 seasons was shipped to Bangladesh and used in the manufacture of clothing for Cotton On. READ HERE >>


MAURITIUS – CLOTHING FIRMS & THE SOUTH AFRICAN MARKET, 1 August 2018
In view of its membership to Southern African Development Community (SADC) and its geographical proximity Mauritius acts as the gateway to the African continent. Over the last few decades Mauritius and South Africa have strengthened their business ties and today South Africa has grown into an important trade and investment partner for Mauritius. Mauritius’ exports to South Africa rose from MUR3.2bn (US$93m) in 2010 to MUR6.4bn (US$186m) in 2017. It is currently the country’s third most important export market for apparel products after the United States and the United Kingdom. With a view to further consolidating its market share and promoting investment as part of its trade and investment promotion strategy, the Economic Development Board (EDB) - conducted a textile and apparel marketing promotion mission in South Africa from 19-26 June 2018, targeting three major centres. The trade and investment promotion mission entailed: a one day business forum and buyers sellers meeting in Durban, participation in the two day Source Africa 2018 international apparel fair, a one day business forum meeting in Cape Town, and a two day business forum and buyers sellers meeting in Johannesburg. READ HERE >>


TANZANIA – A NEW COTTON GROWING REGION? 25 July 2018
Tanzania agricultural researchers have established that the Dodoma Region has soil that is suitable for growing cotton. READ HERE >>


GHANA – NEW MINIMUM WAGE, 30 July 2018
Ghana’s National Tripartite Committee has raised the daily minimum wage by 10%. The increment brings the new minimum wage to GH¢10.65 (US$2.22), up from GH¢9.68 (US$2.02). The new wage rates become effective in January 2019. READ HERE >>


RWANDA – GARMENT EXPORTS NO LONGER QUALIFY FOR AGOA ACCESS, 30 July 2018
President of the United States: “I have determined that Rwanda is not meeting the requirements described in section 506A(a)(1) of the 1974 Act and that suspending the application of duty-free treatment to certain goods would be more effective in promoting compliance by Rwanda with such requirements than terminating the designation of Rwanda as a beneficiary sub‑Saharan African country. Accordingly, I have decided to suspend the application of duty-free treatment for all AGOA-eligible goods in the apparel sector from Rwanda for purposes of section 506A of the 1974 Act.” The President’s decision was published in the United States "Federal Register" on 2 August 2018. READ HERE >>


RWANDA – LOCAL MADE CLOTHES COST TOO MUCH, 30 July 2018
Many Rwandese consumers are not buying the new “Made in Rwanda” clothing products and Chinese clothing imports, which have replaced second-hand clothes, saying they offer limited choice in quality, price and uniqueness. The government has been progressively phasing out second-hand clothes since 2016 when it increased import tariffs from Rwf173 (US$0.20) to Rwf2,170 (US$2.50) per kg for second-hand clothes, while import tariffs on footwear increased from Rwf433 (US$0.50) to Rwf4,336 (US$5) per kg. READ HERE >>


SOUTH AFRICA – SPACE IN SHOPPING MALLS, 27 July 2018
It has been established (as of July 2017) that the current size of the South African retail market is estimated at around 23.4m square meters of gross lettable area across 1,959 individual shopping centres. The study was conducted for the South African Council of Shopping Centres. The data shows that the South African shopping centre market size ranks it in eighth position among the 43 countries forming part of this analysis – just behind Australia and France. The top three countries in terms of shopping centre supply – the United States, China & Canada - contribute a combined 77% to the overall figure. READ HERE >> and READ HERE >>

SQUARE METERS OF SHOPPING CENTRE
GROSS LETTABLE AREA PER 1,000 POPULATION
UGANDA - COTTON PRODUCTION, 4 August 2018
A Ugandan cotton farmer explained that cotton was once a cash cow in Uganda where growers aspired to out-compete each other in the acreage covered and income earned but that today cotton is slowly becoming a crop of the past with great decline in its production across the districts that used to grow it. The farmer complained that cotton production has been falling on account of low yields and sometimes abandonment of the crop by the farmer due to low prices. READ HERE >>


NIGERIA – TEXTILE INDUSTRY OVERVIEW OPINION PIECE, 6 August 2018
An opinion piece on some of the problems facing Nigeria’s textile and apparel industry. READ HERE >>
 
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FEATURE
SOUTH AFRICA - AGOA & POST-AGOA OPTIONS

The United States’ African Growth & Opportunity Act will expire the end of September 2025. Signals from the previous and the existing US administrations are that it will not be renewed. The strong messages from the US is that it would want to replace AGOA with a number of reciprocal trade deals with a number of sub-Saharan African (SSA) states – the new arrangements would provide that US made products and services would also get easier access to the economies of the important African states.

According to US administration sources cited by a US based think tank (Covington’s Global Policy Watch - a branch of a US law firm working on various policy issues), Kenya, Ghana and Côte d’Ivoire could be early contenders for a trade accord with Washington.

The rumours that the US will kick off negotiations with other African states have obviously perturbed South Africa. For if any of these countries were to be the first to conclude a trade deal with the US this deal would be the template (a "model") for other African trade deals. South Africa is now researching the options open to it; some of its options based thinking is obviously informed by detailed trade flow data impact analysis. Below is an extract from a recent (mid-July 2018) South African Department of Trade & Industry (DTI) presentation which shows its US trade deal options.

While from a clothing perspective South Africa gains little from AGOA – its manufacturers are unable to use fabrics made anywhere in the world to make garments which would enter the US market free of duty (the so called 3rd country fabric rule) – some of its Customs Union partners (notably Lesotho and eSwatini (formerly Swaziland)) will be anxiously watching the situation.

Article 31(3) of the 2002 main Agreement of the Southern African Customs Union (SACU) provides that no SACU Member State shall be able to negotiate and enter into new preferential trade agreements with third parties, or amend existing agreements, without the consent of other Member States.


Lesotho and eSwatini (but also Botswana and Namibia) will be concerned that South Africa may want to conclude a deal that may not co-ordinate with their interests. In a worst case scenario for them South Africa may find itself in a position whereby it does not want to conclude a deal with the US – and with no replacement for the AGOA arrangement in place by the end of September 2025 Lesotho and eSwatini's apparel exports may be left stranded.

Of course there will be those that state that SACU is a democratic institution driven by a consensus approach to decision making. This maybe what the SACU Agreement states. But it is, for the most part, a fiction. When it comes to trade matters South Africa is firmly in charge – it generally acts in such a way that it first protects its own interests.



PRESENTATION ON
CURRENT & FUTURE SOUTH AFRICAN TRADE ARRANGEMENTS WITH THE US
SOUTH AFRICAN DEPARTMENT OF TRADE & INDUSTRY
POWERPOINT PRESENTATION - JULY 2018

EMERGING RISKS (Slide 9)
  • Recently the United States’ (US) Administration has announced that it will negotiate a bilateral free trade agreement with an African country which will serve as a model Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with other African countries.
  • The African Union (AU) and the majority of African Growth & Opportunity Act (AGOA) beneficiaries are opposed to the ideal of a US bilateral FTA with an African country. The African side wants the AU to provide a framework on the basis of which countries or regional blocks could negotiate FTAs with the US. The AU may not negotiate an FTA with the US since only customs territories have competencies to conclude FTAs.
  • Recently the US has been using national security (Section 232 - "s232") as a basis for restricting imports into the US. In March 2018, the US suspended AGOA & GSP benefits for steel and aluminum imports. In addition to this measure, the US imposed a 10% tariff on aluminum imports from South Africa.
  • In May 2018, the US also announced an investigation that would determine whether the US should impose restrictions on imports of vehicles and parts. If tariffs (estimated at 25%) are imposed on these products, current AGOA and General System of Preferences (GSP) benefits for SA will almost be totally eroded.
  • Therefore, if the US imposed s232 restrictions on automobiles, SA would lose AGOA & GSP benefits, as well as have an additional tariff of 25% imposed on Most Favoured Nation (MFN) tariffs.
  • Thus, it would seem s232 poses a bigger risk to SA-US trade than a simple loss of AGOA benefits which could come from an out-of-cycle or annual review of AGOA eligibility.

POST AGOA POLICY OPTIONS (Slides 10 to 12)
  • The US has been wanting to negotiate FTAs with African country. The current model that the US uses is the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) model FTA which includes both at the border and beyond the border issues.
  • The TPP type is comprehensive and liberalises trade in substantially all goods and services and includes commitments beyond those currently established in the World Trade Organisation (WTO).
  • It includes not only commitments on trade in goods and services, but but would require SA to make concessions that would subject SA domestic policies to the dictates of the US such; government procurement, intellectual property rights, labour, environment, disciplines on State-Owned Enterprises (SOEs), temporary entry of business persons, rules on electronic commerce, competition policy, investment, and special regimes.
  • Therefore, concluding a TPP type trade agreement with the US would erode SA development policy space by undermining National Development Programme (NDP) and Industrial Policy Action Plan (IPAP) objectives, as well as other interventions to transform and modernise the South African economic and industrial structure.

OPTION 1: A reciprocal free trade (in goods only) agreement (EPA type arrangement)
  • This is a scenario where SA and the US open their respective markets to each other’s goods by eliminating import duties.
  • This would result in direct job losses of approximately 9,830 due to increase in US imports; gain of 2,030 jobs due to increase in SA exports. There would be net loss of 7,800 for SA.
  • The large impact in favour of the US is to be expected, as SA already exports significantly under the AGOA duty-free preferences, whereas it will be granting completely new market access to the US which currently exports non-preferentially to SA.

OPTION 2: Most-Favoured Nation (MFN) or non-preferential duties
  • This scenario is applicable if SA were to lose AGOA & US GSP beneficiary status. SA and US exports would attract MFN duties when they enter each other’s markets. MFN duties would be higher than duties under a preferential arrangement (such as AGOA & GSP).
  • Modelling results: losing significant impact on the SA economy if no strategy was adopted to reduce the impact of losing these preferences - decrease in exports by R36bn and loss of 30,000 direct jobs.
  • The effect would be reduced by almost half if SA ceased exporting automotive products under AGOA by the time it loses the US unilateral trade preferences. Vehicles = 80% of SA’s exports under AGOA. SA automakers have ceased exporting fully built cars from Feb 2018, and would therefore have reduced significantly their automotive exports to the US by the end of 2018.
  • US s232 restrictions on aluminium and steel, as well as autos imports would not only revert SA-US trade to almost MFN bases; they also imposed additional tariffs above MFN.

OPTION 3: Concluding a preferential trade agreement (PTA) with the US
  • A PTA is a scenario that would cover only trade in goods, and with only limited tariff line coverage compared to an FTA.
  • SA could propose that the US extend and bind all current AGOA and GSP preferences to it, in exchange for extending to the US preferential duty-free treatment on the 387 tariff lines it had requested in 2015 in exchange for keeping SA as an AGOA & GSP beneficiary. This way the current AGOA & GSP benefits preferences would be indefinite.
  • This offer could be augmented with selected additional tariff lines.

KEY MESSAGES TO THE US's FTA DEMANDS (Slides 13 & 14)
  • Continental integration is a priority and any trade and investment relations with the US should support these objectives.
  • SA is concerned about the erosion of AGOA benefits through Section 232 duties – the impact will be huge if autos and auto components are affected as they accounted for 65% of AGOA benefits and 3% of GSP benefits in 2017.
  • s232 duties on Steel, aluminium and auto and components affect 80% of AGOA benefits and 43% of GSP benefits in 2017.
  • Therefore, since AGOA is a special dispensation for SSA exports, the US should exempt SSA imports from s232 duties.
  • The SA Poultry industry threatening to take SA Government to court for not withdrawing from US bone-in-chicken cuts the quota of 65,000 tons in retaliation for to the erosion of AGOA benefits due to the s232 tariffs on steel and aluminium – The Paris Agreement between SA & the US included a link between AGOA benefits and the TRQ on bone-in chicken cuts.
  • An FTA is not the only mechanism through which SA and US can establish a mutually beneficial trade and investment relations – consideration should be given to practical business-business cooperation on infrastructure and industrial development which will result in increased US investment. US investments account for only 0.55 of SSA’s FDI stock according to a United States International Trade Commission (USITC) 2018 study.
  • Furthermore, the US has demonstrated, by imposing the s232 tariffs on steel (25%) and aluminium (10%) from Canada and Mexico, that an FTA does guarantee or protect exports to the US from its unilateral measures.
Source: DTI PRESENTATION (July 2018)
 
FACT OF THE WEEK
COTTON MADE IN AFRICA (CmiA)
AFRICA'S ACCREDITED TEXTILES PRODUCTION UNITS
JULY 2018

According to the Cotton made in Africa (CmiA) project Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) is the fifth largest cotton exporter worldwide. Cotton is grown there by about 3.4m small-holder farmers. A total of more than 20m people in the region are directly or indirectly living from cotton. Cotton thus plays a key role in fighting poverty and makes a major contribution to food security in many countries of SSA. So far, African smallholder farmers have not been fully able to use this potential to improve their economic living conditions, as they are faced with many challenges such as fluctuating world market prices, low productivity, and poor infrastructure.

Against this background, the CmiA initiative has set itself the goal since 2005 to sustainably improve the living conditions of cotton farmers in Sub-Saharan Africa. Their commitment is thus not based on donations, but rather, on the principle of helping people to help themselves through trade: African smallholders learn about efficient and environmentally friendly cultivation methods through agricultural training provided by our experts. At the same time, it established an international alliance of textile companies which purchase the CmiA raw material and pay a licensing fee to use the seal. The proceeds from licensing fees, in following with the workings of a social business, are reinvested in the project regions of SSA.

In July 2018 CmiA updated their schedule of textile plants located a around the world that have been accredited to use the CmiA lable. In all 91 plants were accredited - only 9 were located in Africa!
Full details of the CmiA initiative can be found on their website
Source: CmiA Spinning Mills & Fabric Producers (published on 7 Aug. 2017; modified on 27 July 2018)
 
RESEARCH UNDERWAY
Hawassa Industrial Park Community Impact Evaluation”. Researchers: Morgan Hardy, Kevin Croke, Christian Meyer. A project of the Private Enterprise Development in Low-Income Countries (PEDL) - a joint research initiative of the Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR) and the Department for International Development (DFID). Ongoing.

Synopsis: This project uses a unique large-scale government led industrialization project in Southern Ethiopia to understand the impact of factory employment on workers and the rural communities from which they originate. The Hawassa Industrial Park (HIP) is one of ten industrial parks that are currently being planned and built all over Ethiopia. These parks will focus on light, export-oriented manufacturing. The park is unique in that all recruitment and training of workers is centralized through the Hawassa Industrial Park Sourcing and Training Employees in the Region (HIPSTER) program, which will identify, select, screen, grade and train about 30,000 HIP employees in the next two years. The HIPSTER program allows randomization opportunities at two stages: (1) selection of job seekers in the rural communities around Hawassa for participation in the screening and grading process and (2) selection of graded job seekers to interview with specific employers for specific jobs.

The project team will have access to rich administrative data tracking workers from initial listing, through selection, screening, grading, interviews, employment and retention. Using data from survey of potential source households across potential source communities, in conjunction with variation in (fully observed through the HIPSTER database) random selection into park employment for women across households and communities, both the direct effects on source households as well as spillover effects on neighbouring (not affected) households in source communities, can be estimated. On top of easing policymakers’ knowledge gaps around the industrial park, findings from the project will shed light on employment dynamics in an industry that has had a mixed track record in empowering women. The latter will be addressed directly through several questions in the household survey that are meant to elicit intra-household bargaining power, potential pressure to redistribute income, and distributional and non-distributional conflicts. Source:
READ HERE >>


Uncertain Delivery Times and African Manufacturing – Using Supply Chains Models for Cost Estimation”. Researchers: Hannes Malmberg, Kinley Salmon. A project of the Private Enterprise Development in Low-Income Countries (PEDL) - a joint research initiative of the Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR) and the Department for International Development (DFID). Ongoing.

Synopsis: A key question in development economics is why multi-national corporations (MNC) do not always locate production in places with the lowest input costs. Most attempted explanations have at their core that low productivity results in high unit costs despite low input costs. A complementary perspective is that production need not only be cheap, but also reliable. This perspective fits well with the emphasis in the supply chain literature on reliable deliveries, the growing complexity and sensitivity of global supply chains, and the great concern firms express about uncertainty. This project explores the effect of uncertain delivery times of on the efficiency of manufacturing.

Using models from operations literature on supply chain management and data on the distribution of delivery times for transports in East Africa, the researchers will evaluate the change in long-run average costs achieved by reducing delivery uncertainty from African levels to European levels (specifically delivery times from Rotterdam). This will allow for an estimate of the extent to which uncertain delivery times damage African competitiveness. By creating a novel connection between industrial organization, operations research, trade, and development economics, this project aims to understand the costs of poor infrastructure and processing on export industries and the way in which these costs can affect the scale and types of industries that locate in certain regions. A clear understanding of the impact of uncertainty in transport times on different industry sectors can help motivate policy for reducing uncertainty such as infrastructural improvements or changes to port and customs processing procedures. Source:
READ HERE >>
 
 
UPCOMING EVENTS
  • Sourcing at Magic - Trade Show - 12-15 August 2018. Las Vegas, United States. For more information: www.ubmfashion.com
  • International Textile Manufacturers' Federation (ITMF) - Annual Conference - 7-9 September 2018. Nairobi, Kenya. For more information: www.itmf.org
  • Origin Africa – Trade Show - 9-11 September 2018. Nairobi, Kenya. For more information: www.originafrica.org
  • Apparel Sourcing Paris - Trade Show - 17-20 September 2018. Paris, France. For more information: www.apparelsourcing.fr.messefrankfurt.com
  • Organic Round Table - workshop organised by the Textile Exchange and Catholic Relief Services - 28 September 2018. Koudougou, Burkina Faso. For more information: SEE HERE >>
  • Africa Sourcing & Fashion Week (ASFW) - Trade Show - 1-4 October 2018. Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. For more information: www.asfw-online.com
  • Maroc Sourcing 2018 - Trade Show - 11-12 October 2018. Marrakech, Morocco. For more information: www.marocsourcing.ma
  • Textile Exchange Sustainability Conference - Annual Conference - 22-24 October 2018. Milan, Italy. For more Information: www.textileexchange.org
  • Destination Africa - Trade Show - 17-19 November 2018. Cairo, Egypt. For more information: www.destination-africa.org
  • ATF Expo - Trade Show - 20-23 November 2018. Cape Town, South Africa. For more information: www.atfexpo.co.za
  • 77th Plenary Meeting - International Cotton Advisory Committee (ICAC) - Annual Conference - 2-7 December 2018. Abidjan, Ivory Coast. For more information: www.icac.org and SEE HERE >>
  • Morocco Fashion & Textile - Trade Show - 28-31 March 2019, Casablanca, Morocco, For more information: www.moroccostyle.net
  • Source Africa - Trade Show - 12-14 June 2019. Cape Town, South Africa. For more information: www.sourceafrica.co.za
 
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I get repeated requests from environmental and labour compliance auditing bodies for in-country staff who can assist them with translations when they are undertaking in country audits. If you know of any individuals/organisations who could undertake these kinds of services kindly let me know their details. Country, language competencies, names, contact details please. editor@africantextilesandapparel.com
 
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about Mark Bennett - Editor

"The African Cotton, Textiles & Apparel Monitor"
I have almost 30 years' experience working in Africa's cotton, textiles and apparel value chain. Initially I was, for 15 years, a sector trade unionist in South Africa; then, from 2004 onwards, I worked as a development consultant for various Southern / Eastern African governments, and domestic private sectors. In my development activities I have been engaged by private sector foundations, and by DFID and USAID funded contractors. I find it rewarding creating development interventions that help cotton, textiles and apparel stakeholders to better processes, improve productivity, increase sales and add investment. See my full CV at Devex or LinkedIn.
 
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