COVID-19 resurgence leaves textile-garment makers restless

Update: 21:04 | 24/05/2021
Viet Nam’s textile and garment exports grew 9 percent to over 9.5 billion USD in the first four months of 2021, with shipments of cord fabric and fibre and yarn increasing 35.7 percent and 43.4 percent, respectively, year-on-year.
COVID-19 resurgence leaves textile-garment makers restless
Illustrative photo. (Source: VNA)

It was an especially encouraging performance given that the sector witnessed a 10.5 percent decline in generating 35 billion USD from exports last year. The industry is aiming for up to 39 billion USD in shipments this year.

However, exporters and producers can’t rest easily as the country’s fourth wave of COVID-19 is ravaging industrial parks in the north, where a large number of textile and apparel factories are located.

If a company is put under quarantine and must suspend production for 14 to 21 days, its plan for the year as a whole would be in tatters, according to Chairman of the Viet Nam Textile and Apparel Association (VITAS) Vu Duc Giang. The consequences could be enormous, leaving firms on the brink of bankruptcy and workers without jobs, he added.

Textile and garments is a labour-intensive industry and the damage caused by the COVID-19 resurgence may be incalculable, he explained. Delays in delivery can lead to cancelled orders or delay penalties, resulting in losses in the billions of USD and reputational damage for the industry.

It is vital to protect workers’ health to maintain continuous production, Giang said.

To deal with the situation, VITAS has proposed the government and the Ministry of Health help producers buy and administer COVID-19 vaccines, with priority given to those in areas hit hardest by the pandemic.

The association has also suggested firms in the industry provide financial support for procuring vaccines, to speed up nationwide vaccination efforts.

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(Source: VNA)