Ghana becoming importer of its own imitated products, demands an end to this

YarnsandFibers News Bureau 2014-04-25 08:30:00 – Ghana

Ghanaian textile industry is going through a declining phase, which once stood as world’s eminent maker of textile patterns is under threat of imitation by foreign manufacturers. Mainly, China is gradually taking over the Ghanaian market with a primary focus on the textiles industry where the growth of its exports constitutes a double woe for the country.

Ghana is become an importer of its own imitated products, the products imported not only carry the designs of Ghanaian cloths, but are imitated to let them appear as if they were produced in Ghana. Moreover, they are also sold far below Ghanaian textiles.

Local retailers and artisans are under fear of their extinction due to the flood of cheap imports. Ghana is becoming the destination of all kinds of imitated products—many with brand names similar to known brands.

Tax revenue from the local industry has also dipped at a time when the government is desperate for cash to accelerate its development agenda. Meanwhile, the floodgate seems to have been opened to a few to smuggle into the country what can be produced here to meet the demands of the market. As the result, the economy is recording a rapid rise in the sale of fake logos and designs of Chinese textile firms on the market.

The decline in the textile industry has been largely due to trade liberalization policies and programs which have made it impossible for Ghana’s textile products to compete with cheap imports from Asia.

The Ghanaian textile industry once had about 25,000 workers, has gone down to less than 4,000 and is set to see further reduction with no help in sight for the industry, if government fails to curb the incessant smuggling of pirated textile products into the country.

Union leaders of the Textiles, Garment and Leather Employees Union have been warning of unsustainable job losses within the textile industry and are also very disappointed over the suspension of the Anti-Piracy Textile Task-Force, under the Ministry of Trade and Industries.

But Eugene Adarkwa-Addae of the Ghana Standards Authority has been keeping the Ghanainan textilers on the alert that all kinds of imitated products and fabrics run the risk of being seized and burned by his department has an effort towards revitalizing the textile and garment industry.

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