GENEVA — Prime Minister Pakalitha Mosisili of Lesotho, a poor sub-Saharan African nation, said his country needs to diversify away from its heavy dependence on apparel exports.
Mosisili said the end of the global quota regime in 2005 "had adverse effects" on the country's textile and apparel industry, which is also the biggest employer.
"About 30,000 jobs were lost," he said here recently.
The prime minister said the country has managed to revive most of those jobs in the apparel sector thanks to new companies coming to Lesotho, mainly from Asia, to invest in the sector.
"I have no doubt we can do a lot more," he said, but also noted that as the country was recovering from the "textile shock" and the loss of the substantial number of jobs, the food and energy crises pose new challenges. "We no doubt need to diversify. We can't put all our eggs in one basket."
Mosisili acknowledged the importance apparel exports have played in helping many countries develop their economies. The prime minister also lauded the support offered by a U.S. preferential trade program aimed at helping poor African nations secure market access for their products.
"The African Growth and Opportunity Act has been a very important factor in our textile industry," he said. "It's been one of those programs that has served us very well."
Mosisili noted Lesotho has been one of the most successful sub-Saharan African countries to export apparel to the U.S. under AGOA. According to World Trade Organization data, in 2006 U.S. imports from AGOA-eligible nations that entered duty free totaled $1.3 billion.
In 2005, U.S. imports of apparel from Lesotho contracted 15 percent to $408 million compared with the year before and in 2006 were valued at $407 million, according to WTO statistics.
Donatella Versace will receive the International Award at the 2018 @cfda awards, which were announced tonight. Tap link in bio for a list of all the nominees and honorees. #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @rahirezvanistudio )
The 2018 @cfda Awards nominees are out! @virgilabloh for @off____white for is nominated for Womenswear Designer of the Year. Tap link in bio for all the nominees. #wwdnews #wwdfashion ( 📷: @simonelezzi)
@chanelofficial is suing high-end vintage retailer @whatgoesaroundnyc for trademark infringement, a move that could cost the retailer millions. The French fashion house claims that it’s not only unintentionally sold counterfeit goods on occasion, but that it’s “gone out of its way to create an association with Chanel,” which does not exist. Read Chanel’s statement on WWD.com #wwdnews (@aitorrosasphoto)
Exclusive: Guillaume Henry has left @ninaricci, the fashion house said on Thursday. “After three years of mutually gratifying creative collaboration, Nina Ricci and Guillaume Henry have together decided that the designer will depart the house after the presentation of the fall-winter 2018-19 collection,” Ricci said in a statement. Get all the details on WWD.com #wwdfashion (📷: @aitorrosasphoto)
“When Bella enters a room all heads turn,” said @peterphilipsmakeup, creative and image director for @diormakeup. Last night, the two celebrated the product launch of Dior’s Lacquer Plump in Los Angeles with other celebs like @parisjackson, @winnieharlow and more. Head to WWD.com to see the rest of the photos from the night (📷: @chelsealaurenla) #wwdeye
“These shirts are an art form, it’s about getting the message out to as many people as you can. It breaks down the pretentiousness of the art gallery,” says Kumasi Sadiki, cofounder of @ebayontheblock, a store that sells merchandise by New York artists who are shifting their attention to clothes as a wearable medium. Pictured here is a design by artist @joegarvey_, one of the first to spearhead this movement. Head to WWD.com to read @mistywhitesidell full story on how their designs have become merch for the underground elite #wwdfashion
@netaporter is dedicating a part of its website – called the Fine Jewelry and Watch Destination – to highlight its high-end jewelry. The hub will feature products on the site, as well as incorporate styling advice and educational content about high-priced jewelry items. Get more details on WWD.com. #wwdaccessories
For “The Cher Show,” an upcoming musical based on @cher’s life and career, @bobmackie is once again collaborating with the singer in designing the costumes. For decades, Mackie has designed glitzy stage costumes and red carpet looks for the 71-year-old Grammy winner. Pictured here is a sketch of some of the pieces in the wardrobe of the musical, which is set to debut in Chicago on June 12 before making its way to Broadway #wwdeye