Overview of the Textile and Clothing Sector

In the Asian continent is located the world’s major textile producers, responsible for almost 70% of the textiles and more than 65% of the clothing items consumed worldwide, according to data from the IEMI – Institute of Studies and Industrial Marketing of Brazil.

Of the world’s 15 largest textile producers, eight are on the Asian continent and the most prominent of these are China, India, Pakistan, Indonesia, Taiwan, South Korea and Thailand, which are among the top ten. Nine of the top 15 producers of clothing items are Asian, with China, India and Pakistan occupying the first three places.

In this scenario, China holds a particularly prominent position. The most populous country on the planet is responsible for 50% of the world’s textile production and 47% of clothing items manufactured globally.

Brazil is the only South American country that holds a prominent position in global textile production. The country is responsible for 2.4% of global textile production, earning it fifth place in the global ranking, and is the fourth largest producer of clothing, with 2.6% of global production.




Chinese production caters to the internal and external market; more than 33% of global exports are of Chinese origin, reaching 37.5% when including exports from the administrative region of Hong Kong.

Although it is one of the world’s largest producers and consumers for the sector, Brazil’s share of international trade is still small; the country ranks 33rd in exports of textiles and clothing products, characteristic of an economy aimed at the internal market with a low export volume.

In imports, the world leader is the United States, holding 15.5% of the total volume in clothing items, whereas in manufactured products, China leads the field. Brazil’s position in relation to imports is much the same as that of exports, occupying 25th place.




Potential Opportunities in the Brazilian Textile Industry

Brazil, one of the BRICs, with the population of 200 million and tremendous natural resources, is now the 7th largest economy in the world and Top1 in South America. Strong economy growth, diversified and multiple market demands demonstrate Brazil’s unlimited potential.

In 2012, the Brazilian GDP was U$2.252 trillion, with 60% contribution of household consumption. The middle class population is over 95 million people and its per capita income is U$355.60, according to the Human Development Atlas 2013 published by the UN – United Nations Organization.

Sector profile and relevance, in monetary values, the textile industry produced US$ 58.4 billion in 2012, which is equal to 5.5% of the total amount produced by Brazil’s manufacturing industries, excluding mining and civil construction activities.

Total investment made in the Brazilian textile industry chain in 2012, in modernization and/or expansion of production capacity (machinery, facilities, training, etc), was estimated by IEMI to have reached US$ 1.9 billion, which represents a 7.3% rise over 2011, with an accumulated expansion of 40.1% for the period from 2008 to 2012.




In 2012, Brazilian exports, including textile fibers and apparel products grew 26.7% over the previous year. The volume of textile fibers exported by Brazil in 2012 grew 27% compared to 2011. This scenario, the highlight is the cotton fibers, which recorded a growth in exports over 38% in tons. In the same period, 2011-2012, the export of garments fell by over 21%.




Brazilian imports of textile articles in 2012, including textile fibers, was down by 7.3% in tons compared to 2011, dropping by 1.1% value, totaling US$ 6.7 billion at 2012. However, in comparison between 2008 and 2012, volume grew by 23.4% and value was 73.9% higher.

The apparel segment that covers all types of clothing had a volume growth of 12.5% in tons and value up 25.8% in the last year alone, resulting in a US$ 2.25 billion in import value. In relation to the 5-year period analyzed volume more than doubled (106%) and value more than tripled (204%).

In the home textile segment the volume in tons grew 69% and appreciated significantly by 105% value from 2008 and 2012. Totalizing 59.487 tons imported in 2012.






When evaluated regions you can see that the Southeast stands out by concentrating higher volume consumer markets, and for being the distribution center for wholesale and retail in the country.

São Paulo: Ideal City to Host Go Textile Sourcing Show Brazil

São Paulo, with a 17 million population, 1,500 square kilometer area, is the largest industry, finance, culture, and business center in Brazil. It is also an important textile industry cluster, featuring with more than 300 local textile manufacturers, which accounts for 60% of Top 500 in Brazil.

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