Ethiopia is hoping to become a major African hub for apparel manufacture. Since last year, the Ethiopian institute and the National Institute of Fashion Technology in India have been providing training to professionals. Nearly 1,360 professionals have received training this year alone.
Textile and garment factories, some of which have a capacity to create up to 7,000 jobs, are being established in Ethiopia. Currently, there are more than 130 giant textile and garment industries in Ethiopia and some 37 of the industries are owned by foreigners. International British and Swedish clothing brands like Tesco and Hennes and Mauritz are in the process of setting up an outsourcing base in Ethiopia.
Ethiopia began industrial production less than a century ago. It exported textiles and apparel worth $92.02 million in the first 10 months of the current fiscal. Products were exported to Germany, Turkey, China, Italy and the United States. Ethiopia is fast becoming a rising star for sourcing garments. It is the fifth fastest growing economy in Africa. It’s the third highest in the world for public investment. The government has set a target of reaching a billion dollars in textile exports by 2016. The US accounts for 40 per cent of Ethiopia’s textile and garment exports.