Garment accessories and packagers are anticipating a pick-up in fortune as interests from local and international buyers have increased this year with the recovery of global economy, participants of a trade fair said yesterday.
“Local garment producers are showing interest in knowing about the new machines,” said Didarul Hasan, managing director of Dad International BD Ltd, an authorised dealer of Durkopp Adler, a German manufacture of industrial sewing machines.
He said the participation of local and foreign visitors is higher at this year's International Garments Accessories and Packaging Expo, where 300 companies from 30 countries are participating.
Bangladesh Garment Accessories and Packaging Manufacturers and Exporters Association in association with Zakaria Trade and Fair International, ASK Trade and Exhibitions Private Ltd have organised the four-day fair at Bangabandhu International Conference Centre.
“The fair is an opportunity for Bangladeshi apparel manufacturers to be introduced to the updated technologies,” said Mizanur Rahman, senior service engineer of Glory Trade Centre Ltd, an authorised dealer of Typical International Corporation, a Chinese sewing equipment maker.
He said the country's garment owners are showing “strong eagerness” in adopting new technology.
Manzur Habib, business development officer of Smart Tech Ltd, said the labour crisis will be a major problem for the garment industry in the near future, so manufacturers are focusing on high-tech machines to meet production targets.
“We want to prove to the international buyers that our packaging and accessories products have met international standards and we are exporting,” said Shohag Hasnine, senior marketing officer of AKH Packaging and Accessories Ltd, which makes sewing thread, button pictures, polybag, carton, gum tape, hanger and neck board.
Meanwhile, Commerce Minister Tofail Ahmed, who inaugurated the fair yesterday, said the US wants the country to wholly embrace trade unionism in the garment sector, but they themselves do not have trade unions in the US.
Accessory makers and packagers sold $4.1 billion of products to local apparel manufacturers last fiscal year, said Rafez Alam Chowdhury, chief of the sector's lobbying group.
The sector, which forms a backward linkage to the readymade garment industry, is now aiming to sell $12 billion of accessories and packaging items by 2018 and $25 billion by 2025.
The country's garment sector used to depend on imported packaging materials and accessories a decade ago, but the local manufacturers are now taking the spot.
Chowdhury urged the government to allow utilisation permission and term loans at low rates for the sector.