Predictions for the future of the apparel industry in Asia

What are your predictions for the future of the apparel industry, particularly in Asia which is a key manufacturing hub, with the increasing focus on sustainability?

Senpathi J.
Kandana, Sri Lanka

“Despite the growing offshore and onshore interests, Asia is well set to remain one of the key manufacturing hubs given its competitive advantage around cost competitiveness, quality and duty related benefits at present. The success of customer partnerships in the next decade will depend largely on operational sustainability. Circularity, in terms of fiber to fiber recycling, is widely spoken of while environmentally-conscious consumers are swifter to bear premium pricing.

Firstly, the close loop connectivity throughout the value chain starting from fabric supplier to end consumer will determine the longevity of partnerships for most manufacturers. This trend will eliminate most transactional players while strategic partnerships flourish. Circularity-related transparency enablement, powered through blockchain, will determine an apparel manufacturer’s competitiveness in the next decade.

Secondly, as an energy intensive industry, the extent to which a manufacturer resorts to alternate sustainable energy options will determine their existence. Most customers are advocates of UN SDGs around clean energy, responsible consumption and climate action. Supplier Climate Action Programs run by key players have set collaborative goals on energy consumption and if Asia is to maintain its competitiveness, it is essential for governments to work closely with industry leaders in establishing the infrastructure required to battle sustainable energy-related targets. ”

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