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Textile and Garments
The textile and garment industry in Kenya received a boost in 1990 when the government liberalized the economy and adopted an export led growth strategy.

In 2000 with African Growth and Opportunities Act (AGOA) coming into being, providing duty free and quota free access to the U.S. market, in addition to permitting the use of third country fabrics, the Kenyan garment industry received a major boost with many foreign companies setting up factories in the EPZ's in order to take advantage of these incentives.
At present there are two schemes in operation for the manufacture of garments for export.

Export Processing Zones - foreign firms establish factories in the various EPZ's with the objective of producing textile and garments primarily for the export market. There are approximately 35 companies operating under this scheme at present.
Manufacturing Under Bond - Foreign and local firms organised under the umbrella of the Investment Promotion Centre (IPC) for the production of goods both for the local and export markets. The difference between this scheme and the EPZ is that under the MUB the factory can be located in any location within Kenya and not necessarily within a controlled zone as in the EPZ's. There are currently approx. 27 companies operating under this scheme at present.

Both these schemes provide incentives such as tax holidays, duty and VAT exemption in the import of machinery and raw material.
There are also a sizeable number of smaller firms catering for both the local and export market.

The textile and garment sector in Kenya has been through turbulent times in the last ten years with the sector gaining ground in the last four years due to more emphasis on exports to the American market through the AGOA initiative of duty free and quota free access to the U.S. market in addition to permitting the use of third country fabrics in the production of garments for the market.
About 90% of the existing textile and garment producing firms based in Kenya are established with the primary objective of overcoming quota limitations in their existing facilities and thus the entire production is focussed on quota categories that have high premiums and are in short supply.
With the expiry of the Multi Fibre Agreement (MFA) on January 1, 2005 which will signal the end of the quota system in the global trading system the textile industry in Kenya is under threat in the world market from the developed textile producing countries of Asia and the Far East due to cheaper costs of production and accessibility to the world markets.
The cotton growing industry is being revamped after years of neglect due to lack of markets for the product and import of finished products for the local textile industry.

  • Textile and Garment Exporters
  • Textile and Garment Organisations

 
 
 
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