Story: Morocco’s textile and clothing sector overcoming the COVID-19 aftermath (en)
“As Morocco’s largest industrial employer, the textile and clothing sector provides for more than 200,000 jobs. The unprecedented crisis has shut down 90% of the sector in March and April, endangering thousands of families” explains Fatima-Zohra Alaoui, Director General of the Association Marocaine des Industries du Textile et de l’Habillement (AMITH).
However, the COVID-19 crisis has not discouraged the Moroccan textile and clothing sector from mobilising and committing to aid the population. Many Moroccan companies reoriented their production to produce masks to meet national needs and to support local communities. Having been able to meet domestic demand, the sector is now also ready to export facemasks to Europe.
The AMITH and Morocco’s Ministry of Industry, Trade, Green and Digital Economy together with ITC’s GTEX/MENATEX programme have launched a series of initiatives to strengthen small businesses and enterprises to overcome the new challenges.
A new online platform called AMITH Marketplace, for example, is helping improve access to information and to connect buyers from the local and international markets with Moroccan suppliers.
The platform connects members of the AMITH, who supply raw materials for the production of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) as well as mask producers with local and international buyers. In addition, it also provides AMITH access to information about domestic production, products certifications issued by the Institut Marocain de Normalisation (IMANOR) and available stock levels. Overall, more than 153 profiles have been registered. The platform has received more than 4,500 visits from more than 11 countries such as France, Austria, United States, Australia and Canada.
Manufacturing and supplying PPE is a lifeline for many Moroccan textile and clothing manufacturers. The sector is ready to take on its normal business of producing fashion, while continuing to be a reliable partner for the supply of medical textiles.
Fatima-Zohra emphasises Morocco’s agility to react to the crisis and the series of activities established to promote the national sector in video messages addressed to international buyers and clients.
“As destination countries start to reopen their markets and resume business, Morocco’s textile and clothing sector with the support from its government is prepared to re-establish business and exports goods to Europe and other countries,” affirms AMITH’s Director-General.
Optimistic about the initiatives taken to help the sector, Morocco’s textiles and clothing sector continues to be a reliable business partner, close to its customers, responsible and committed towards its employees and the society.
The GTEX/MENATEX program is a 3 years program, implemented by the International Trade Centre (ITC) financed by the Swiss Government within the framework of the Global Textiles and Clothing Program (GTEX - Egypt, Morocco, Tunisia, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan) and by the Swedish Government within the context of the Middle East and North Africa region Program Textiles (MENATEX - Egypt, Jordan, Morocco and Tunisia), with co-financing from the Government in the case of Morocco.