GENEVA — Global textile production increased by 1.7 percent in the fourth quarter of 2016 but apparel output rose by only 0.5 percent compared to the same period a year earlier, a United Nations report said.
However, both textiles and apparel came in below the 2.7 percent increase in total global manufacturing and reflected the overall slowing of growth in developing and emerging industrial economies, and in particular China, the world’s largest manufacturer.
Overall, developing and emerging economies accounted for the bulk of the gains in both segments, with an expansion of 2.7 percent in textiles and 1.6 percent for apparel, while output in industrialized economies posted a decline of 1.1 percent for textiles and a contraction of 3.3 percent for apparel, the report by the Vienna-based U.N. Industrial Development Organization said.
But estimates compiled by U.N. economists for the report also show the results varied widely among producing nations in both emerging and rich industrialized economies.
From October to December, textile production among developing and emerging economies rose by 6 percent in Brazil, 4.3 percent in China, and by 2.6 percent in Mexico. But they registered a drop of 7.9 percent in Indonesia, 2.9 percent in Turkey, and 2.1 percent in India, UNIDO said.
Similarly, during the quarter, textile output among industrialized economies delivered gains of 2 percent in Germany, and 0.3 percent in the United States, but declines of 5.7 percent in Italy and 4.9 percent in France.
With regards to apparel, production during the fourth quarter in developing and emerging economies increased by 8.6 percent in Vietnam and by 3.2 percent in China, but witnessed declines of 7.2 percent in Turkey, 6.5 percent in Mexico, 5.9 percent in India, and 5.7 percent in Peru.
In rich industrialized economies, UNIDO said, apparel production grew by 6.7 percent in France, and by 2.9 percent in Spain, but posted falls of 5 percent in the United States, 3.1 percent in Italy and 2.4 percent in Germany.
The report said that while the overall growth trend in world manufacturing was positive in the second half of 2016, it also noted that “geopolitical uncertainty remained high and potential changes in global trade arrangements may create new risks.”