The Philippine Exporters Confederation Inc (Philexport) recently urged the government and the private sector to jointly work to immediately implement the strategies under the Philippine Export Development Plan (PEDP) 2023-2028 to save the domestic apparel industry amid the global trend of reshoring or onshoring.
In a statement, Philexport trustee for the textile, yarn and fabric sector Robert Young made the call to bring down the cost of doing business in the country and boost competitiveness.
Exporters can receive support for their infrastructure requirements, such as power, transport, logistics and telecommunications connectivity, under the PEDP.
“The new digital and robotics manufacturing that will play a significant role in the reduction of labour cost is also part of the plan,” Young was quoted as saying by a domestic news outlet.
Global events like the pandemic and the Russia-Ukraine war, the dependence on Asia and the orientation for imports and apparel production are now transforming the sector, Young, who is also president of Foreign Buyers Association of the Philippines (FOBAP), noted.
Plans to reshore or onshore manufacturing could result in the imminent closure of the apparel manufacturing for export market and its related industries in the country and displacement of apparel workers on a large scale, he added.
“Philippine market share for the sector is one-tenth of one percent of an annual global market size of $995 billion trade value,” the PEDP stated.