Bangladesh’s apparel shipment to the European Union (EU) market witnessed a 45 percent increase totalling $9.58 billion during the January-May period this year, according to the latest data from European Statistical Office - Eurostat.
The growth was much higher than the EU's global apparel import growth of 24.37 percent during the period.
"The retail sales of many European brands declined which increased their inventory stock. Considering all these factors, our export to the EU market might be showing a declining trend in the coming months," he, however, added.
The EU's clothing imports from China reached $10.19 billion in the same period with 20.67 percent year-over-year growth, the Eurostat statistics suggested.
Other countries having significant garment export growth were Cambodia 32.68 percent, Pakistan 29.28 percent, Indonesia 25.36 percent, Vietnam 22.34 percent, and Morocco 20.05 percent.
As the Covid-19 pandemic situation improved globally, the world economy started being normalised before the Russia-Ukraine war hit the economy.
Inflation hit the economies across the globe. The prices of daily commodities are increasing due to the shortage of various items including fuel. The consumers in Europe also cut back on clothing purchases amid economic turmoil.
Meanwhile, the Western consumers have also become more cautious about their personal spending, economic analysts said.
BGMEA president Faruque Hassan said that the international retailers and brands ordered 20 percent less from September to November last year than the amount they ordered from March to June this year.
"Retailers are not able to sell products to the customers there as before," he said.
Faruque Hassan also mentioned that the consumers are forced to buy fuel and food at higher prices than before. "In this situation, they have reduced the budget on clothing."
He said that the price of gas in the United States and the European Union markets surged almost three times.
The latest Export Promotion Bureau (EPB) data, however, showed that products worth about $3.98 billion were exported in July this year, down from $4.91 billion in June. It indicates that the exports declined by $93 million in a month while the monthly export target was set at $5.5 billion.