Turnover in the Dutch clothes industry fell again in the first eight months of 2005: it was more than 4 percent lower than twelve months previously. Turnover in this sector of industry has been decreasing for a number of years now.
Turnover in clothes industry
Foreign turnover down sharply
Turnover in the Dutch clothes industry fell by nearly 55 percent in the period 1996–2004, to 250 million euro in 2004. In the period January-August 2005, too, turnover fell further. This decrease is the consequence of a substantial decrease (- 20 percent) in foreign market turnover. On a brighter note, in the same period domestic turnover was just over 3 percent higher than twelve months previously.
Sharp growth in imports from China
Imports of clothing rose substantially, by more than 28 percent in the period 1996 to 2004. In 2004 nearly 5.7 billion euro worth of clothes were imported into the Netherlands. Imports from China in particular were higher: they rose by 268 percent to 781 million euro.
Number of clothes manufacturers, 1 January
Fewer clothes manufacturers
The foundering clothes industry and increasing imports have resulted in a sharp reduction in the number of companies manufacturing clothes, which fell by 41 percent from 1996 to 2005, to 1,275. More than 78 percent of these companies have only one or two workers.