Bangladesh will open at least six new denim mills in the next two years. Increasing demand for denim fabrics from garment makers has encouraged investors to establish new factories. Currently, Bangladesh has 30 denim mills with a capacity to produce 435 million yards of fabrics a year.
Local suppliers can meet only 40 per cent of Bangladesh’s annual demand for denim fabrics and the rest is met through imports from China, India and Pakistan. Last fiscal, Bangladesh exported denim goods worth $2 billion. Existing investment in the denim sector is more than $1 billion. Bangladesh is moving away from basic denim products to high-end denim products.
Many foreign companies are now coming to open offices or factories in Bangladesh, the hub for denim. With higher demand for denim, Bangladesh has overtaken China to become the largest denim supplier to the European Union. Its denim exports to the 28-nation bloc have a 21.18 per cent market share. Bangladesh supplies denim products to major global retailers, including Levi's, Diesel, G-Star Raw, H&M, Uniqlo, Tesco, Wrangler, s.Oliver, Hugo Boss, Walmart, and Gap. Annually 2.1 billion pieces of denim are sold globally. Bangladesh’s denim exports are forecast to reach seven billion dollars by the end of 2021.