The textile exports from companies operating in the Free Trade Zones (FTZs) of the Central American country of Nicaragua would touch 1.5 billion this year, registering a growth of 8 percent compared to 2012, said Dean Garcia, executive director of the Nicaraguan Association of Textiles and Apparel (ANITEC).
According to the ANITEC official, owing to the recovery of the international economy, the volume of exports from textile firms operating in the FTZs of the country has significantly increased, reports La Prensa.
Mr. Garcia said that in terms of volume of exports from the garment industry, which incurred a growth of 7 percent year-on-year in 2012, the volume of exports is expected to rise 10 percent by the end of 2013.
According to the ANITEC official, the estimated increase in the volume of exports could be attributed to the fact that the textile and apparel sector of the country has begun to diversify.
Nicaraguan enterprises are now widely engaged in producing sports apparel, innerwear lines, in addition to casual apparel, and they are also diversifying garment sector by producing womenswear, business uniforms, and more, he added.
Mr. Garcia explained that these apparel products are more value-added and diversification into manufacturing these products could open new markets for goods made in the country, especially markets in Europe.
As of now, there are some companies that are already exporting to Europe, but it is done via specific customers in the US, Hence, it is necessary to achieve or establish an agreement for direct links with customers in Europe so that the Nicaraguan companies can export goods to them directly, he added.
According to the ANITEC official, so far this year, firms operating in the FTZs have created nearly 110,000 jobs in the country. As of June, 2013, according to Central Bank of Nicaragua figures, over 104,763 people worked in textile enterprises in FTZs, he added.
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