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Prospects for the textile and clothing industry in Mexico

  • January 2015
  • 44 pages
  • Textiles Intelligence
Report ID: 2600603

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Mexico's textile and clothing industry employed almost 415,000 workers in 2013, of whom 74% were in clothing. Furthermore, the industry provides livelihoods for many more people in support activities and a large number of operatives work in clandestine workshops which do not register their employees. However, textile and clothing exports have fallen from their peak and in 2013 they were 43% lower than the figure achieved in 2000 after six years of rapid growth following the implementation of the North American Free Trade Agreement (Nafta). Furthermore, imports exceeded exports by US$2.24 bn in 2013, reflecting the industry's heavy reliance on imported raw materials. The industry also relies heavily on the USA as a market for its exports but it has suffered in the US market as a result of growing competition from China. It has also suffered from Chinese competition in the domestic market. Between 2008 and 2013 Mexican clothing imports from China grew by 559%, and in 2013 alone they were up by 42%. However, the industry can look forward to a bright future. Mexico is forecast to become the largest economy in Central and South America within ten years, and it is clawing back some competitiveness in the USA and seeking to expand its reach in other markets. Also, there is scope for higher sales in the domestic market, given that Mexico has a population of 120.3 mn which is becoming increasingly prosperous and given that high spending younger age groups account for a large proportion of this total.

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