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COVID-19 impacts Bangladesh’s apparel exports to the US


The fallouts of the pandemic COVID-19 have badly impacted the prices of Bangladesh’s apparel exports to the US.

The price of imported apparel in the US declined to $2.60 per Square Metre Equivalent (SME) in February this year against $2.95 per SME in February 2020, according to data from the US Department of Commerce.

The US imported $5.39 billion worth of garments in February this year as against $5.91 billion in the same month of 2020, reports Textile Today.

Last year, during the pandemic time, prices of Bangladeshi-made t-shirts declined in the US markets although the prices of the same t-shirt made in Vietnam were almost double those of Bangladesh to the American markets.

In the US market, the price of a dozen Bangladeshi T-shirts made from cotton fell by 20 percent to $17.99 in 2020 from $22.43 in 2019 while the price of the same product made in Vietnam declined by 17 percent to $31.9 in 2020 from $38.2 in 2019.

After the third quarter of the fiscal year 2020-21, the export earnings from RMG stood at $23.49 billion which was $25.95 billion during the same period of FY2018-19, indicating a 9.49 percent decline equivalent to a short of $2.46 billion.

Knitwear export struggled to retain 0.35 percent growth in March 2021 over March 2019; the average growth of knitwear export for July-March 2020-21 than July-March 2018-19 is -1.15 percent.

Woven garments is facing the toughest time ever, while export has suffered double-digit decline since August 2020, and in March 2021 compared to March 2019 woven export fell by 27.70 percent. The nine-month average growth between 2021 and 2019 stands at -17.62 percent.

The price trend continues to worsen as March 2021 posts a 5.11 percent decline in unit price compared to March 2019.