With Sri Lankan apparel industry’s order books for October-December quarter being full, the Fabric and Apparel Accessories Manufactures Association (FAAMA) is confident of achieving the $ 800 million turnover target for the year. As per a Daily FT report, despite facing many challenges last year, the apparel industry staged a major recovery that confirms its relevance to the growth and way-forward strategy of overall exports of the apparel industry. FAAMA is a key sub-sector of the $5 billion apparel industry, which has grown to be worth $800 million from $500 million a few years ago.
Apparel factories in the country are currently operating in full swing, adhering to the Health Ministry stipulated protocols, despite additional cost borne by the manufactures, says Pubudu de Silva, Chairman FAAMA. Manufacturers’ value additions increased from 30 to 50 per cent over the past five years. In-country sourcing has helped Sri Lanka save foreign exchange outflow, besides tightening control over supply chains.
The government had earlier set an ambitious $6 billion export target for the apparel industry but it was later revised to $5.1 billion due to setbacks resulting from the fourth wave of COVID. Last year, apparel exports dropped to $4.1 billion from $ 5.6 billion in 2019.
The country faces port-related logistics issues that it hopes to resolve with the help of Joint Apparel Association Forum (JAAF) and relevant authorities. However, the foreign exchange crisis in the country has aggravated the challenges faced by all exporters. FAAMA is also working closely with the Government to find sustainable solutions for waste management issues.