Monday, 7 May 2012

Dear Ghana, our ‘Textile Industry’ is disappearing, what are we doing about it?

Paulina Opoku-Gyimah says: Before I started Ghana Rising Blog in 2009, I had no idea Ghana’s textile industry was in danger, but it soon became apparent that unless we [Ghanaians and beyond] start to buy our own, this ancient industry, which employs over 3’000 men and women; -and is, whether we like to admit it or not, one of Ghana’s last remaining industries (cocoa beans and gold and now oil) -is in grave danger of dying out. What are we doing about it? Its time to buy Ghanaian wax prints -me thinks….

Anyway, I stumbled across the following via Style Africa’s Facebook page (thanks guys) and just had to share… comes via

Title: What Will Save Ghana’s Textile Industry?
Dated: Monday, 30 April 2012 14:41

Ghana’s once vibrant industry has gradually joined the league of other countries in the sub-region, with collapsed textile and garment manufacturing sectors such as Nigeria.

From over 20 textile firms that employed more than 25,000 people in the last two decades, the country now has only four textile factories employing less than 3,000 Ghanaians.

The country’s once thriving textile market is now flooded with Chinese substandard textile market is now flooded with Chinese substandard textile products, therefore surging the unemployment rate.

The situation seems to be further deteriorating with the four major textile companies currently in operation now employing some 2,961 people.

Inconsistent government policies over the years, industry players say, have contributed largely to the continuous decline in the sector.

Currently, the four major companies that have survived the turbulence in the sector are the Akosombo Textiles Limited (ATL), Textyl Ghana Limited (GTP), and Printex; with Ghana Textile Manufacturing Company (GTMC) at an ailing stage, struggling between life and death.

The sector, which is predominantly cotton based, has seen cotton production on small scale, while the production of man-made fibres is also undertaken on a small scale.

The Ghana Cotton Company Limited (GCCL), which is one of the major sources of raw material for the textiles industry is Ghana, is on the verge of collapse.

Available statistics indicate that the country’s total industry output was pecked at 129 million yards in 1977, with a capacity utilization rate of about 60 per cent.

That, it said, made GTP to maintain the lead in the industry in an annual production of 30.7 million and 6 million yards, respectively, within the same period.

Unfortunately, however, the total industry outs, the statistics said, declined from 129 million to 46 million yards in 1995 but recovered to 65 million yards in 2005.

According to the General Secretary of the Textile, Garment and Leather Workers’ Union (TEGLEU), Mr Abraham Koomson, cheap imports, particularly from China, have forced the companies to shut their spinning and weaving departments, while hundreds of workers employed in those units have been made redundant.

“The irony of the situation is that, while these cheap imports flood the Ghanaian market, the production companies also steal and imitate patents and trademarks of the local companies, which are often embosses to make them look like they were manufactured and woven here in Ghana,” Mr Koomson said.

For instance, one can easily come across a Chinese fabric with a GTP, Printex or ATL name and logo on it, therefore making it a hot commodity on the market, due to their relatively cheaper price,” Mr Koomson said.

The imitated fabrics, according to the Ghana Standard Authority (GSA), are often manufactured using some 28 chemical banned in textile production, thereby making the fabric fade easily once it is washed.

The surviving textile companies, he said, now “simply import the proceed cotton, colour it and print it”. That, Mr Koomson said, was in relation to the fact that the private person’s essence of doing business is to make profit and not to create jobs for people.

A task force set up in 2005 comprising representatives of the security agencies, the then Ghana Standard Board, the local manufacturers and the trade unions to conduct periodic checks at the points of sale of smuggled products was subsequently put in place with a view to arresting culprits and confiscating goods smuggled into the country.

The task force has, however witnessed various setbacks in their operations, with persistent resistance on the part of the traders, who sometimes endanger the lives of the group.

The disregard for law and order has become the order of the day, while security personnel detailed to protect and ensure compliance in regulations sometimes compromise their stands for material gain.

The Ministry of Trade has as well looked on aloof, while people arrested for engaging in smuggling are left off the hook, as a result of over-politicization of arrest of culprits.

Mr Koomson also blamed the country’s judiciary system for emboldening the smugglers. A new approach of confiscating and burning seized smuggled textiles have also received stiff opposition from members of the public.

The irony is that despite the seizure and destruction of confiscated fabrics, the industry still remains uncompetitive, which is the evidence of failed interventions made by the government and stakeholders.

To what extent could acts of indiscipline that tend to deprive the state of revenue for job creation and development be tolerated?

Is complicity on the part of officials and those in charge of enforcement further lead to a decline of the sector?

Stakeholder bodies and industry regulators should do proper introspection with the hope of resuscitating the textile industry; this could reduce unemployment.

Source: Daily Graphic

I don’t know what firm/country this fierce wax print comes from but I love it…

Burberry S/S 2012

A selection of Ghanaian grade 1 wax print cloths

Gucci S/S 2010

A selection of Ghanaian grade 1 wax print cloths


  1. We are producing 100% cotton yarn of several counts ranging from 10/s up to 40/s for knitting and weaving.
    yarn exporter in Pakistan
    standard textile Mills Pakistan