Despite the current challenges faced by the South African based Clothing, Textile, Footwear and Leather (CTFL) industry, KZN CTC members are slowly reclaiming domestic market space. This is evident in the benchmarking numbers indicating increased sales and employment, and further supported by indicators such as improved productivity, On-Time-In-Full reliability, quality, flexibility, product capabilities and exchange rate movements.

Key drivers for this positive trend are support for retailer in-season trading requirements and Quick Response capabilities into the domestic market (42 days lead time).

KZN CTC believe that exports will be critical to the future of the KZN CTFL industry. It will contribute to trend alignment and global retailing between the Northern and Southern hemisphere further creating a counter-cyclical production demand profile. But perhaps even more importantly it will lead to increased production footprint (greater market access) and hence room for additional design and pre-production capabilities.

The critical question is whether South African based CTFL manufacturers can use their current point of differentiation created in the domestic market to supply the North West European market such as UK, Belgium, Netherlands and Germany. In order to get a better understanding of these possible export opportunities B&M Analysts has carried out a research study focusing on export logistic chains and how viable they would be for South African manufacturers.

Read the full article in the KZN CTC newsletter.