Is it for you? Should you source garments from Myanmar ? .... come and meet us on Thursday, 16 June
Updated: Feb 6, 2019
If you are in the fashion industry and are constantly on the look out for the best strategic sourcing options, you possibly sit in one of these three camps!
1) You are someone who is already operating Myanmar, has found suppliers (possibly Chinese factories in Myanmar) and have started working there
2 ) You are someone who has been there, seen things, but wasn't sure about working with the country given all the constraints or challenges it brought with it and put it on hold.
3) You may also be someone who has not yet been there but has heard a lot about the country and are potentially interested in seeing how things develop before going there!
Whichever camp you sit in, its difficult to keep track of all the happenings in Myanmar with its constantly evolving profile! We wanted to take this opportunity to bring some latest information to you.
Increasingly fast paced development in the sector
When we first went in to Yangon in 2012, there were no mobile networks, very few hotels, and taxi prices were fairly reasonable!
Fast-forward to 2016, your mobile phone catches network almost immediately on landing, there is 3G available, Wi-Fi is available in most places (although the speeds can be slow sometimes), high quality hotels have mushroomed almost on every corner in the city, there are great bistros and restaurants set up, expats are a common phenomenon on the streets, and taxis are at least 3 times more expensive! The Chinese have been heavily investing in factories, garment factories have been opening almost everyday, and donor programmes such as the Export Coaching Programme as part of Garments Myanmar run by the Dutch Government agency CBI, (www.cbi.nl) are focussing on developing and increasing FOB exports of locally owned factories to Europe sustainably.
Over the years 2014 – 15 about 20 local factories have participated in a series of Master Classes on developing sustainable FOB (direct) exports. They have already been exposed to EU markets and have visited the first set of interested retailers to assess interest to learn about expectations and requirements. As a result in 2016, some of these retailers and brands that met the Burmese companies during their study visit in 2015, learnt about their potential, provided some inputs and have now started exploring direct business possibilities.
Export competitiveness of local factories is key to being an ethical sourcing destination
Building capacity of local entrepreneurs and locally owned factories in Myanmar is critical to keeping the industry ethical and sustainable in the long term. As the Chairman of Myanmar Garment Manufacturers Association (MGMA), Mr. U Myint Soe says, “Our focus is to build capacity in the country and within the industry to handle the FOB process in a responsible way”
Fresh, important developments currently in Myanmar from missions in May 2016
With skills in creating value added products and more complex garments such as jackets, and years of experience in supplying to highly demanding customers in Japan and South Korea, Myanmar is more than just a low cost destination. SO what are the next steps for Myanmar? What’s happening now after the elections?
We will bring to the table our fresh insights and share our learnings from the high level stakeholder meeting as well as key findings from on-the-ground in-factory audit missions undertaken by our teams in May 2016.
So come and join us on Thursday June 16th, 2016 in Central London (venue to be confirmed) from 2 - 5.30 pm for a high level panel followed by Q&A.
Then join in for a networking session and a glass of wine from 5.30 - 7.30.
The sessions are free to attend, but are by invitation only. To know more and if you are interested and would like to participate or attend, please write asap to firstname.lastname@example.org and latest by Wednesday, 1 June 2016 (UK time). There are limited seats.
To learn more about the CBI Myanmar garment-sourcing programme 2015 - 2019 and to see how you could benefit from it or identify ways to get involved as a brand or retailer, please contact:
Myanmar CBI garments programme implementation
Clothing Connect B.V., 1, Primrose Street EC2A 2EX, London, UK
Melanie van der Baaren – Haga, Programme Manager at CBI
Centre for the Promotion of Imports from developing countries (CBI)
Netherlands Enterprise Agency (RVO.nl)