Cotton shortage hampers Textile sector earning


Ethiopia had hoped to generate USD 350 million from textiles and garments last year. However the nation’s efforts were hampered from the low supply of cotton, power interruption and other outside challenges. In reality garments and textiles earned USD 111 million which is 31 percent of what they had hoped.
Investors are saying that there is not enough supply of cotton to meet demands. They also hope that educational institutions will focus on the industry so that more qualified textile professionals emerge.
During a meeting with stakeholders in the textile industry at Capital Hotel on October 8, Ahmed Abtew, Minister of Industry, said the government has been doing many things to help the textile industry flourish. He pointed out that three years ago the country earned USD 65 million USD but currently the textiles and garments have brought in USD 111 million.
He added that the fact that many investors do not have enough skills and low agricultural supply are other factors. The country plans to earn USD one billion from textiles at the end of the Growth and Transformation Plan (GTP), however, in the past four years it has earned USD 435 million  .
When the GTP began the idea was to increase textile manufacturing companies by 48 when the GTP sunset in 2015 but currently there are 33. Seleshi Lemma, Director General of the Textile Industry Development Institute added that the cotton supply is something that really need to be addressed. He also added that companies should begin working when they say they will.