SRI LANKA: Major textile deals in North Carolina

Less than 10 percent of Sri Lanka's annual $1.2 billion textiles import trade is done with the United States, and country officials said they'd like to see it reach 25 percent to 30 percent by 2007.

Sri Lanka, an island in the Indian Ocean south of India formerly known as Ceylon, is about half the size of North Carolina with about twice the population. Its apparel industry grew 12 percent to 18 percent annually in recent years. Last year's growth was 16.7 percent, officials with the nation said. The country has gone from supplying mass-market retailers like Sears and Kmart to high-end customers including Victoria's Secret, Liz Claiborne and Abercrombie & Fitch.

But Sri Lanka - lacks the machinery and materials such as thread, yarn and fabric to boost its output, officials said. That's where the U.S. textile industry, particularly in North Carolina, could play a crucial role.
"What we see in North Carolina is its strong textile infrastructure," said Mahesh Amalean, chairman of MAS Holdings in Sri Lanka - , whose customers include GAP, Banana Republic and Nike. "The object is to see whether this is an opportunity for us to link up with American textile industries in the Carolinas."

Stephen Dobbins, president and CEO of Carolina Mills in Maiden, said his company already does business with Sri Lanka - . "International selling is very, very important to us," he said. "These are the kinds of folks we'd like to work with."

Amalean said Sri Lanka's best-kept secret could be that it conforms to international trade practices and its currency is not devalued, unlike China's.

"One of the reasons the better brands and specialty stores and retailers are working with us is because we conform to international standards," Amalean said.

Despite the shrinking textile industry, North Carolina still employs 64,200 textile workers, about 27 percent of the 238,100 textile workers in the United States, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

However, North Carolina is losing textile jobs at a faster rate than the nation as a whole, which lost 40 percent of its jobs over the past five years, compared with 46 percent in the state.

At year's end, worldwide quotas will be lifted, and some industry observers have predicted it could spell the end for U.S. textiles, especially those that don't have a niche.

Jim Lemons, president of the Belmont textile center, said he sees opportunities for local companies and the Sri Lankans.

"The center can offer product development and testing to help move these things forward," Lemons said.

Source: Charlotte Observer. 

Send your News/Releases for publication to [email protected]
Added: September 16, 2004
Start script - 1519415975.7788 Start news id check - 1519415975.7788 After news id check - 1519415975.7791 After cookie_code - 1519415976.3672 Before news detail - 1519415976.3672 After news detail - 1519415976.3678 Start cat select - 1519415976.3679 After cat select - 1519415976.3681 before preg replace - 1519415976.3681 After preg replace - 1519415976.3682 Before tag engine - 1519415976.3682 After tag engine - 1519415976.3715 Before mptt engine - 1519415976.3715 After mptt engine - 1519415976.3715 Before related engine - 1519415976.3715 After related engine - 1519415976.3739 Before update hits - 1519415976.374 After update hits - 1519415976.3742 After update news_hits - 1519415976.3748 After mem_only_views - 1519415976.3748 -------------------------------------------------- Total Exec time:- 0.59609985351562
AddThis Social Bookmark Button   Tell a friendBookmark AddThis Feed Button
Related News:

Website design by InWiz • © - 2000-2018. Internet Wizards All rights reserved. About usTerms & ConditionsDisclaimerPrivacy policy • 23-02-2018