During the first 7 months of 2020, the EU-27 production in the textile and apparel industry fell strongly, a slump reaching -17.3% in textiles and -26.5% in clothing. These double-digit negative rates can be seen in almost all textile and clothing (T&C) subsectors with some exceptions.
The manufacture of nonwovens was more resilient, as the needs and capacities for nonwovens-based face masks and medical supplies were promptly increasing during the pandemic period.
These are the key figures of the Autumn Report 2020 from the European Apparel and Textile Confederation (Euratex), Brussels/Belgium.
Due to the corona pandemic, the downward trend of the EU turnover continued to intensify since the beginning of 2020, reaching a decline of 16.3% for textiles and a decrease of 22.6% for clothing during the 1st half (H1) of 2020, as entrepreneurs in the T&C industry had to adjust to a sharp drop.
EU exports to 3rd world countries plummeted, during the first part of 2020, with sharper declines than the ones observed during the 2008-2009 financial crisis (-20.4% year-on-year).
There is great uncertainty regarding expectations for the 2021-2022 period. Euratex preliminary forecasts based on historical production figures reveal a production slump in 2021, though the rhythm would be much slower compared to 2020: -8% for textiles, including man-made fibers, and -12.6% for clothing. Production trends in 2022 should improve further though remaining on the negative side.