KENYA’S APPAREL EXPORTS UNDER AGOA REACH 38 BLNS SHILLINGS IN 2015

Kenya’s textile sector exported apparel worth more than 38 billion shillings (about 374 million US dollars) last year under the United States’ African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA), which provides trade preferences for qualified African countries.

The chief executive officer of the Kenya Manufacturers Association (KMA), Phyllis Wakiaga, who disclosed this at the inauguration of modern spinning machinery at a spinning mill in Thika, about 45 kilometres northeast of here, on Tuesday, said Kenya’s apparel export sector currently employed about 42,000 people while the domestic sector employed some 51,000 people, including those working in the informal sector.

She noted with concern, however, that out of the 38 billion shillings worth of exports under AGOA, more than 70 per cent of the value went to Asia for the purchase of raw materials, mainly fabrics.

There was thus a need to facilitate textile manufacturers in Kenya to produce their own fabrics and yarn of high quality and variety like the Asian textile giants.

“The launch of this modern spinning machinery at the Thika Cloths Mills is one of the bold steps towards backward integration which Kenya can gain from if we embrace quality production,” she said.

“By producing quality fabrics, Thika Cloths Mills will be positioning itself to take advantage of the slowdown in the Chinese textile industry.”

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK