Promoting Sustainability in the Textile and Garment Industry

Project description

Title: Promoting Sustainability in the Textile and Garment Industry (FABRIC)
Commissioned by: German Federal Ministry for Cooperation Economic and Development (BMZ)
Country: Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, Myanmar, Pakistan and Viet Nam​​​​​​​
Partner: Non-governmental organisations, governmental organisations, private sector organisations and civil society organisations in Asia, Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, Myanmar, Pakistan and Viet Nam
Lead executing agency: Ministry of Commerce (MoC, Bangladesh), Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training (MLVT, Cambodia), Labour and Human Resource Department (Pakistan), Ministry of Industry (MoI, Myanmar), Ministry of Commerce (MofCom, China), Vietnam Textile and Apparel Association (VITAS, Vietnam) under the Ministry of Industry and Trade
Overall term: 2019 to 2025

Women workers making jackets in a production hall. © Roman König

Context

The textile industry is a key sector of the economy in many Asian countries and in some of them accounts for up to 80 per cent of export revenues. Although the underlying conditions in these countries vary considerably, the major challenges in the industry are the same: ensuring decent conditions for the workers and reducing environmental impact.

In order to ensure this despite growth, the industry must become more socially, environmentally and economically sustainable. As the industry is continuing to grow, local production companies, business associations, the responsible ministries, trade unions, civil society and international fashion brands need to intensify their cooperation.

Objective

The production conditions in the Asian textile and clothing industry are more socially and environmentally friendly.

Two women looking at an App on labour rights on a smartphone. © Sabrina Asche

Approach

The project networks interested parties in the Asian textile industry. This is achieved for example through ‘Sustainable Textile of the Asian Region’ (STAR), the first inter-Asian network of producer associations. It has also led to the initiative for sustainable trade conditions (Sustainable Terms of Trade Initiative, STTI), which calls for better procurement practices in the textile and clothing industry. Furthermore, the project has launched the Asia Garment Hub, a digital knowledge platform, with the International Labour Organization (ILO).

The project works on possible solutions in energy, chemicals and (waste) water management in order to promote environmentally friendly and resource-efficient production. Digital climate protection training seminars teach producers more about methods for calculating and measuring their greenhouse gas emissions.

In addition, the project focuses on those employed in the textile industry. In particular, it supports women textile workers by offering women’s centres, training, counselling and apps on labour rights and safety in the workplace in Myanmar and Cambodia.

Last update: October 2022

A trainer explaining something during a Sunday training session in the Women Empowerment House. © Roman König

Additional information