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US demand for Vietnam apparel up 15.8 per cent

In the first half of the 2014, Vietnam's exports of apparel products accounted for 13.2 per cent of the total export revenue earned during the period and apparel exports increased by 19.8 per cent as compared to last year. The US was the largest market for Vietnam’s garments in the six-month period. The US market grew by 15.8 per cent year-on-year and accounted for 48.7 per cent of Vietnam’s total market share for garments.

However, the Vietnamese garment industry is facing several internal problems such as being too dependent on imported fabrics, focusing on cut, make and trim jobs, which create low wages for local workers. Last year, Vietnam’s fabric and garment exports grew by 18.9 per cent year-on-year. For the first five months of the year, Vietnam’s exports of yarn rose by 18 per cent. China had the biggest share in this followed by Turkey and South Korea.

For the five-month period Vietnam’s cotton imports soared by 33.2 per cent.  Yarn imports grew by 9.2 per cent year-on-year. Fabric imports also climbed 15.7 per cent. Vietnam is exploring the possibility of importing yarn and fabric from countries like India, Indonesia, Malaysia, South Korea and Thailand, to reduce dependence on China, the main supplier of these materials to Vietnam.