The nation’s textile exports are forecast to grow 5 percent this year, thanks to improving customer demand worldwide, the Taiwan Textile Federation said yesterday.
In the first nine months of the year, exports of Taiwan’s textile products reached US$7.55 billion, edging up 1.5 percent from the same period last year, statistics compiled by the Ministry of Finance showed.
The growth momentum is expected to extend into the fourth quarter amid improving industry sentiment, federation secretary-general Justin Huang (黃偉基) said at a news conference for this year’s Taipei Innovative Textile Application Show (TITAS).
“Taiwanese textile suppliers will also benefit from the 2020 Tokyo Olympics over the coming years, as local companies are strong producers of functional wear and high-performance sportswear for athletes, “ Huang said, citing textile maker Far Eastern New Century Corp (遠東新世紀).
Far Eastern New Century, which mainly fabricates polyester-related materials, has teamed up with Adidas AG this year to manufacture running shoes made from reclaimed and recycled ocean trash.
“That kind of new product [with higher technical thresholds] will enable Taiwanese textile makers to differentiate themselves from their Chinese competitors in the global market,” Huang said.
Commenting on the industry’s outlook, Huang said that the emergence of e-commerce operators has gradually changed the supply chains in the global retailing industry, but that it would only have a limited impact on local textile and fabric companies.
Some US-based e-commerce operators are trying to manufacture low-priced apparel by themselves, but Taiwanese films still hold niches in the functional and sportswear markets, he said.
The three-day TITAS this year is to exhibit a variety of functional wear, smartwear featuring connectivity technologies, as well as recycled and sustainable textiles with a focus on having a lower carbon footprint, the federation said.
A total of 383 textile manufacturers are to use 789 booths to exhibit their latest products at the three-day event, which is to begin on Monday at the Taipei World Trade Center’s Nangang Exhibition Hall.
Buyers from more than 100 international brands are to participate in the event, which is forecast to generate orders totaling US$66 million this year, a 10 percent increase over last year’s US$60 million, the federation said.
Most top players in Taiwan’s textile and apparel industry are to take part in the event, including Far Eastern New Century, Eclat Textile Co (儒鴻), Lealea Enterprise Co (力麗) and Tex-ray Industrial Co Ltd (南緯實業).
However, key members of industrial conglomerate Formosa Plastics Group (台塑集團) — such as Formosa Chemicals & Fibre Corp (台化) and Formosa Taffeta Co (福懋興業) — are not to join the show this year, according to the participants list provided by the federation.
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