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The global fashion business journal

15 Sep 201916:19

Fashion, booster of globalization: exports jumped 35% in one decade

Fashion global commerce jumped to 471 billion dollars in 2017. In the same period, global commerce boosted 26.4%.

23 Aug 2019 — 09:00
Iria P. Gestal/ Daniela García

Fashion, booster of globalization: exports jump 35% in one decade



Fashion boosts global commerce. In the last decade, global fashion exports have increased 35.1%, while the global exchange of services and goods grew 26.4%, according to the last available data of the World Trade Organization (WTO).


In 2007, two years after the Multifiber Agreement changed the global rules of fashion supply and speeded its global reach, clothing exports rised up to 349 billion dollars. Ten years later, the global volume of overseas sales in the sector increased 471 billion dollars. In the same period global commerce went from 14 billion dollars in 2007, to 17.7 billion in 2017.





By regions, India has been the market with the strongest performance in its international clothing trades during this period, multiplying it by seven. Brazil follows, multiplied by three and other Asiatic countries (excluding China and the ASEAN member) that almost triplicated.


China, that entered the WTO in 2001, increased its garment exports 93.3% during this period. Middle East and Australia also positioned high in the list, with rises near 100%.


On the other hand, other regions, like East Europe, that doesn’t belong to the European Union, the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), or Russia, lost relevance in the last decade of global commerce, with drops of 7%, 13% and 15%, respectively.





The three big world powers, on the other hand, grew. Specially United States boosted its exports 28.6% between 2007 and 2008, Japan increased them 20.1% and the European Union 33.5%.


Now, the trade war and the rise of protectionism presents a new challenge for a super globalized sector, from supply to distribution. "The overall picture is concerning” stated Roberto Azevêdo, managing director of the WTO, in the presentation of the last Trade-restrictive measures report, last July.


"These actions have real economic effects, and the alarm bells are already sounding” added, “It is essential that we tackle the tensions that are leading to higher trade barriers, greater uncertainty and lower trade growth”, Azevêdo stated.


According to the report, between October 2018 and mid 2019 restrictive measures of world trade have registered “exceptionally high levels”.  Specially the value of the commerce affected by them, estimated in 339 billion dollars, the second highest number available, after the 588 billion dollars registered the previous period.

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