Bangladesh has yet to make its mark in the $ 180 billion technical textiles market

Bangladeshi textile workers make protective coveralls at a factory amid concerns over the spread of coronavirus disease (Covid-19) in Dhaka, Bangladesh, March 31, 2020 Reuters

Entrepreneurs in the clothing sector had to take the step immediately; otherwise Bangladesh would lose out on the technical market

Bangladesh needs to develop strategies and sub-strategies to capture a significant share of the North American and European market share in technical textiles, experts said.

They also said that entrepreneurs in the garment sector should take the step immediately; otherwise, Bangladesh would lose out in the technical market, estimated at around $ 180 billion.

Experts and insiders made the remarks during a discussion “Feasibility study on increasing production of technical textiles (TT) including personal protective equipment (PPE) in Bangladesh”, jointly sponsored by GIZ, GFA with the support of the Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA).

Technical textile (TT) is a product made for non-aesthetic purposes, where functionality is the main criterion.

Currently, technical textiles are the most widely used in filter clothing, furniture, hygiene products and building materials. Masks and PPE are also technical textile products.

A study released during the discussion said that the current size of the global technical textiles market is around $ 180 billion, and is expected to reach $ 224.4 billion by 2025 at an average annual growth rate of 4. , 2%.


Also Read – PPE exports open a new path for Bangladesh


The global market for personal protective equipment (PPE), a crucial medical textile, is expected to exceed $ 93 billion by the end of 2025. Europe is currently the leader in imports of medical textiles, but demand is coming from North America is also growing and is expected to continue growing.

Although the Covid-19 pandemic has rekindled interest in medical textile products, the world of technical textiles and their end-use products is endless.

Once manufacturers have established a reliable supply of materials, improved their operations, and learned the necessary testing and certification procedures, there are huge opportunities for product diversification, according to the study.

Although Bangladesh is the second largest exporter of clothing, it has yet to tap into this huge market.

Why Bangladesh is lagging behind

According to the study, there are mainly five reasons for this, including lack of knowledge of market requirements, inadequate technical expertise, difficulty in sourcing high-performance raw materials, compliance and certification requirements and need for capital investment.

To overcome these challenges, the study suggested 5 strategies, 21 sub-strategies, 94 key actions and 142 outcomes.

Strategies include extensive branding and marketing, as well as strong collaboration within the industry.

He also suggested implementing compliance with national and international environmental standards, certifying TT / PPE products, creating a skilled workforce, reducing supply chain costs, improving the flexibility and response and integrate communication systems.

The study also suggested key sub-strategies such as creating effective coordination and support policies, creating a collaborative supply chain infrastructure, and building a compliant and trustworthy brand. Made in Bangladesh ”.

It also includes the implementation of lean production practices and the transfer of managerial and technical skills.

Werner Lange, GIZ Bangladesh Textile Cluster Coordinator, said they were proud to share the results, especially critical gaps, key actions and a comprehensive strategy to help Bangladesh enter this new market and – more importantly. yet – to succeed in a sustainable environment. and in a compliant manner.

Faruque Hassan, president of BGMEA, said that at this point they needed investment and technical know-how from developed countries.

“Our industry is ready to respond to the growing TT and PPE market and demand is also on the rise. We are encouraging joint ventures in technical textiles and PPE, and also need the support of brands, testing service companies and technology providers to join hands and turn potential into reality, ”he said. added.

The study advocated for Bangladesh to capitalize on the country’s reputation as a compliant and certified trading partner in the EU and US markets.


Read also – OP-ED: Can the MPPE be a potential sector for export diversification?


Once Bangladesh builds a reputation, trust and reliability in this new product sector, it can gradually introduce more technology and move on to more diverse and sophisticated products with higher profit margins, according to the study.

Even starting with a limited number of products, if done right, it will open the door to a host of other niche categories and products. Encouraged by the success of the first manufacturers, more and more companies will take the plunge and the sub-sector will develop.

The GIZ textile cluster enables local actors to meet some of these challenges.

Highlighting the success of GIZ’s interventions in the textile and clothing sector, German Ambassador Achim Tröster provided continued support.

“We are pleased to cooperate with Bangladesh in the textile sector and – through this study – to provide strategic impulses for the future development of the technical textiles sub-sector,” he added.

According to the study, TT / PPE production and product diversification in Bangladesh are in their infancy.

According to the BGMEA, 155 of its members export masks and PPE, masks to 19 countries and PPE to six countries.


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