A major takeaway from the Bangladesh Denim Expo held at International Convention City Bashundhara in the capital Dhaka, November 7-8, 2018, is that the country’s denim makers need to adopt a comprehensive strategy to compete with the fast-moving fashion trends in the global market.
According to the experts who spoke there, under the strategy, the denim producers will have to go high-end products from the existing basic ones and ensure delivery to the buyers within a shortest possible time.
In addition, the entrepreneurs should invest more in human resource development, perusing buyers for ensuring fair prices and moving forward to convert fashion as an industry for improving the quality of the products, they said.
Exhibitors and buyers expressed their satisfactions about the expo, saying that the future of Bangladesh’s denim is bright despite some domestic obstacles including transportation problems, congestion in the port and the lack of proper infrastructure facilities.
“Our denim sector has a huge potentiality,” Mohammad Jamal Abdun Naser, director of Shasha Denims, told the SPORTSWEAR INTERNATIONAL. “Only Bangladesh has the capacity to provide all types of facilities to buyers within 50 kilometers radius of the capital. It’s a big advantage for sourcing from the country,” Naser added.
Sayeed Ahmad Chowdhury, general manager of Square Denim Limited, told SI that the denim makers will have to diversify their products from basic to high-end using modern technology for ensuring sustainability in the sector.
A good number of countries including India, Pakistan and Turkey have already started producing high-value products for increasing their export earnings from the sector, he added.
Chowdhury, who is also a textile engineer, said lead times will have to be reduced to compete with the fast-changing fashion trends in the global market. A global leading buyer has already introduced a new type of order–speed order–in Bangladesh as part of reducing lead time, he said, adding that now lead time is 45 days instead of 90.
Shamim Masudual Haque, deputy general manager (fashionology division) of Aamra Resources Limited, said fashion will be converted as an industry through setting up more institutions in different parts of Bangladesh.
Bangladesh Ambassador to the Netherlands Sheikh Mohammed Belal said fair wages cannot be possible without fair prices of Bangladeshi apparel and clothing products in the global market. Bangladesh has increased wages by 263% over the last nine years, but such kind of enhancement from the buyers’ side is minimal, he added. “Effective partnership with the buyers will facilitate Bangladesh’s apparel sector to cope with the challenges in a smarter way,” Belal told SPORTSWEAR INTERNATIONAL while visiting the expo on Thursday.
The buyers also should move forward to ensure sustainability of the apparel and clothing sector of Bangladesh, he added.
Abu Syed Mohammad Tarique, commercial manager of the UK-based Shop Direct, also suggested local denim makers to swap high-valued products for existing basic ones to enhance their earnings. “We’re interested to source more from Bangladesh,” he said.
The theme of expo was “Simplicity,” which highlighted the need for uncomplicatedness within the entire denim supply chain. “In the world market of denim, simplicity is now the ultimate sophistication. So in this edition, we’ve tried to give a much simpler message about sustainability and ecology in denim,” Mostafiz Uddin, founder and chief executive officer of Bangladesh Denim Expo explained.
The ninth edition of expo also focused the progress that has been made in Bangladesh regarding safe working conditions and sustainability practices of the readymade garment industry of the country.
A total of 64 exhibitors from across the globe including Germany, USA, Turkey, Italy, Singapore, Spain, Pakistan, Japan, San Marino, China and India took part to display their latest products and services.
Different seminars and panel discussions were organized on the sidelines of the expo where the speakers laid emphasis on the most recent developments in eco-friendly and sustainable finishing technologies, and energy-efficient ways of operations.
More than 5,540 visitors and buyers from 55 countries attended according to the organizers.