The Woolmark Company, the Australian Wool Innovation’s (AWI) marketing subsidy, has decided to consume 3 per cent of Vietnam’s $27 billion textile export market in the next four years. Following an unsuccessful attempt to enter the Vietnamese market more than a decade ago, Woolmark spent nearly $1 million annually to diversify its supply chain in Bangladesh, Russia, Belorussia and Ukraine with a major focus on Vietnam.
During a visit to one of 40 Vietnam-based factories using wool for the first time this year, AWI Vietnam Consultant, Tran Van Quyen is reported to have said that it was a realistic goal for Australian wool to infiltrate $810 million of the Vietnamese textiles and garment exports market by 2020. In order to get a bigger chunk in the Vietnamese textile market, education would be a key strategy. Several companies have now been trained in the dyeing, knitting and finishing processes and have already started taking on commercial orders, he went on to add.
Encouraging Vietnam to start early stage processing of wool, AWI feels that Vietnam could be an alternative to Australia’s heavy reliance on China as the major buyer of greasy wool. While wool entered the emerging Vietnamese market in 2012, it is said that the Vietnamese textile market acquired 800,000 kilograms of Australian wool in the 2014-15 financial year mainly through early stage processing mills in China.