GTEX MENATEX launches the 4th working group of young designers of Tunisian brands (en)
Hammamet – The launch of the 4th working group for young designers of Tunisian brands was held on 31 January during a meeting with GTEX MENATEX beneficiaries organized by ITC, in the presence of Slim Fériani, Tunisia’s Minister of Industry and Small and Medium Enterprises, Anna Block Mazoyer, Ambassador of Sweden in Tunisia, and Etienne Thévoz, Ambassador of Switzerland in Tunisia.
The 4th working group comprises 17 companies created by young Tunisian fashion designers, all of whom were selected following a call for applications. The launch took the form of a TEDx-style presentation where each young designer had the opportunity to present their brand, their journey, their vision and their expectations of GTEX MENATEX.
‘The launch of the 4th working group allows young designers to integrate well into the sector and add an element of creativity and originality – elements often missing in traditional companies,’ said Matthias Knappe, Programme Manager for the GTEX MENATEX programme.
Knappe said promoting young designers was important: ‘It is essential that the programme works with young people in order to link them to the main clothing sector in Tunisia and to strengthen their capacity to export.’
In Tunisia, the textile and clothing industry is crucially important as the sector ranks among the leading suppliers of manufacturing jobs. Employing more than 160,000 people, the sector represents around 20% of the market share of Tunisian exports.
GTEX MENATEX has a budget of $2.46 million, supporting 50 Tunisian companies in the textile field to benefit from this programme. They are encouraged in their production to move from subcontracting to the export of finished products and the development of collections. The programme plans to:
• improve the business environment and the performance of trade support institutions in the sector
• improve the competitiveness of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the textiles and clothing sector
The 4th working group will have the same approach adopted for the other three working groups but focusing on the denim, lingerie, the swimwear sector and clothing for technical use. The working with young designers to identify their technical assistance needs will run for the period 2020-2021.
The GTEX MENATEX programme is funded by the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) of the Swiss Confederation and the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida), focusing on six priority countries (Egypt, Morocco, Jordan, Kyrgyzstan Tajikistan and Tunisia). The programme aims to encourage exports of textiles and clothing from developing countries to promote employment and income generation throughout the value chain.