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US apparel imports up 1.37 per cent in 2017

US apparel imports went up 1.37 per cent in volume terms during January to July 2017. Apparel imports from China increased by 2.67 per cent, Vietnam by 11.02 per cent and India by 2.40 per cent. However imports from Bangladesh, Indonesia and Honduras dropped by 0.77 per cent, 1.89 per cent and 0.90 per cent.

Bangladesh’s apparel exports to the US in the period fell 5.88 per cent in value terms. China has been slashing unit prices to stay competitive in the US and thereby convincing buyers to purchase more quantities. Indian apparel manufacturers are becoming compliant to American buyers’ norms in terms of quality of products, labor conditions, and other legal aspects. Better conditions in India have increased the cost of production for manufacturers. However, US buyers are ready to pay higher prices for garments they import from India. Amid price war between China and Bangladesh, India is steadily growing in its apparel exports to the US.

Despite a surge in quantity of imports, the US did not see a rise in dollar spending. The country’s spend was down 1.90 per cent in the first seven months of the current year as against the corresponding period of 2016.