Monday, 04 October 2010 16:04
CLOTHING AND TEXTILE INDUSTRY JOB LOSSES SLOW DOWN
The 11th National Congress of the Southern African Clothing & Textile Workers’ Union(SACTWU) has heard that job losses in the clothing, textile and footwear industry has slowed over the 3-year period from 1 July 2007 to 30 June 2010, compared to the 3-year period (1 July 2004 to 30 June 2007) covered by the union’s previous Congress held in August 2007.
For the period 1 July 2007 to 30 June 2010, the union’s job loss database recorded 29 500 job losses through factory closures, retrenchments and liquidations. This is 23% less job losses compared to the previous 3-year period. Most of the job losses were in KwaZulu-Natal (45% of the total), followed by the Western Cape (29% of the total).
While these job losses have taken place off a lower base, the main reasons for the reduction in job losses were
the introduction of quotas on certain Chinese clothing and textile products in 2007 and 2008; and
the implementation of the industry Customised Sector Programme (CSP) including the introduction of several industrial and trade support measures.
On average, the period from 1 July 2007 to 30 June 2010 saw 5 factories closing every month.
Of the 5 biggest factory closures during the 3-year review period, 3 were in the clothing industry in the lowest wage areas in the country. The 5 biggest closures were Frame Textiles in Pinetown, Tern Sportswear in Isithebe, Rowmoor Investments in Qwa Qwa, SANS Fibres in Bellville, and Estee Clothing in Isithebe.
The Congress also heard that based on a survey conducted by the union in 2009, covering 81 companies where retrenchments had taken place, 59% of the surveyed companies cited reduction in or cancellation of orders by customers as the main reason for retrenching workers.
Visit http://www.sactwu.org.za/events/national-congress and search the ‘documents’ section for more details.
If further comment is required, kindly contact Etienne Vlok on 021 4474570.