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Apparel orders from neighbouring countries are shifting to India!

Unlike predictions, 2022 has been a roller-coaster ride for the apparel industry, all thanks to – Russia-Ukraine war, recession in Americas and Europe and rising fuel costs. The apparel manufacturing destinations such as Bangladesh, Myanmar, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, till 2021, were busy grabbing the shift that was coming from China but the situation has become so complicated that now these destinations are fighting with each other to sustain buyers. However, it is seemingly a difficult task for these countries as most of them are severely facing the worst economic challenges in their history!

Amidst all this, India has proved to be the most stable country in the sub-continent region which is why it has been able to see a substantial shift not just from China, but also from neighbouring countries such as Bangladesh, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Indonesia. The OTEXA data from January to July ’22 also endorses this fact as it states that India’s growth rate (59.40 per cent) in the US apparel market is the second highest among the top 40 apparel shippers!

Buyers’ trust in India is increasing post-pandemic as India trumped Indonesia in 2021 to become the 4th top apparel shipper to USA India has subtly been taking away business from Indonesia in the difficult and competitive US market. India and Indonesia are two major Asian apparel manufacturing hubs and hold great position in the US market.

Indonesia had been holding the fourth spot since long amidst top apparel exporters’ tally to US, while India remained on the fifth position all through the time. However, the situation has taken a turn in India’s favour and the country surpassed Indonesia in CY ’21 for the first time ever to become the 4th largest apparel exporter to USA.

According to the official US apparel import data, India clocked US $ 4.19 from its apparel exports to USA in 2021, outclassing the performance of Indonesia that shipped US $ 4.14 billion worth of apparels to USA.

India’s supremacy has continued even in 2022 as, during Jan.-Jul. ’22 period, India clocked US $ 3.69 billion from its apparel shipment to USA, which is much better than what Indonesia earned – US $ 3.41 billion.

It’s worth noting here that in 2019, India’s exports of apparel valued US $ 4.05 billion and its gap from Indonesia’s shipment was US $ 339 million. The gap further increased to US $ 495.17 million in 2020, in pandemic-induced year. However, all through 2021, India’s apparel export fraternity – buoyed by strong orders and revival of global retail industry – remained resilient and outperformed its own exports to USA.


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