The fourth edition of Africa Sourcing and Fashion Week (ASFW), Africa’s leading exhibition and conference, will open doors from 1-4 October 2018 to the entire cotton, textiles, apparel, home décor and technology industry.
A few years ago, the Ethiopian government set ambitious goals for the textiles and garment industry with production, productivity and export performance of the industry set to be further increased. Currently, the textiles and apparel sector in Ethiopia employs 47,000 people. According to government plans, the number of skilled labour will increase to 350,000 within the next five years in 12 industrial parks.
The Ethiopian government has declared economic initiatives through opening state-owned companies to foreign investors or shareholders. This is expected to help the country in professionalisation of the state-owned companies and bring in foreign currency. This initiative and the recent peace process with the neighbouring country Eritrea has brought positive echo from various organisations, including the UN, IGAD (Intergovernmental Authority on Development) and Africa Union.
Ethiopia plans to establish itself as a new centre for the international textiles industry. For 2018, the government expects an export volume of US$ 1 billion. According to the plans of the Ethiopian government, by 2025 the country should reach a “middle-income status” and become the largest production hub in Africa.
In addition, a lot of investments for the infrastructure are already made and are still planned. Tax advantages and cheap loans should attract investors. Europe and the US are supporting trade with favourable customs conditions and infrastructure projects. Investors benefit from low wages and energy costs. ASFW’s conference takes up the topic of investment by a panel presented by the government of Ethiopia.
At ASFW, over 250 international manufacturers and exporters from 25 countries will showcase their products and innovations to over 4,000 trade professionals and sourcing industry from around the world. The show in 2017 has already grown more than 30% in exhibitor and more than 5% in visitor numbers. ASFW 2018 is not only a platform for manufacturers from the East African region but for manufacturers from the entire African continent.
For the first time at ASFW, over 12 new South African manufacturers of leather products will present their expertise and products to international fashion brands and buyers. Launched at ASFW in 2017 the unique Walk for Business project will connect more than 25 high-end African designers from South, West and East Africa with international buyers and fashion brands for future collaboration.
Known as Africa´s only trade show for technology, ASFW offers a huge platform for famous machines for production of clothing, textiles as well as dyeing and finishing incl. suppliers of chemicals. ASFW consists of textile, apparel, technology, leather, footwear and home décor and fashion design. Textile, apparel and technology will be presented though Texworld Addis Abeba, Apparel Sourcing Addis Abeba and Texprocess Addis Abeba.
Sustainability in production
The main themes of the fourth edition of ASFW conference will be Sustainability in Production and Transformation in Technology. There will also be a special conference on Continental Free Trade in Africa. In addition, an investment panel will highlight investment opportunities in Mauritius, Madagascar, Kenya and Ethiopia. The governments of those countries will inform about current situation and their support.