The textile industry or apparel industry is primarily concerned with the production of yarn, and cloth and the subsequent design or manufacture of clothing and their distribution. The raw material may be natural or synthetic using products of the chemical industry. In Zimbabwe the cotton, textile and clothing value chain five percent to Gross Domestic Product. However the contribution has shrunk over the years leading up to two percent recently.
One of the Zimbabwean economic sectors, the textile industry’s operations and viability was critically impaired by the severe decline in the Zimbabwean economy during the years 2002 to 2008.The progressive decline in consumer spending power, and consequential decline in demand for textile products, surging increases in operational costs as a result of intense hyperinflation, declining availability of essential utilities, pronounced insufficiencies of foreign exchange to fund imports of essential inputs, and marked contractions of export demand, together with diverse other factors, impacted very negatively upon the textile industry, as it did on many other industries. Consumers were, with very rare exception, unable to fund basic commodities and other life-essentials, let alone to purchase textiles and clothing. Thus, the textile sector sustained an immense contraction of production, concurrently with massively increased fixed costs in consequence of the hyperinflation. Also in addition to these adverse circumstances, the textile industry’s operational efficiencies were substantially jeopardised by recurrent interruptions in essential utility supplies, and especially of electricity and water, erratic and inadequate availability of coal, diesel and petrol, and deteriorating rail and road services. The de-industrialisation of the textile sector has resulted in Zimbabwe exporting most of its cotton lint, depriving the country of the much needed foreign exchange earnings if it had exported value...