Opinions consist of views about the global garment trade from us, or occasionally - from other people. These are freely available to everyone.

  • Can US apparel importers expect sudden price rises – or a trade war?

    How seriously should brands and retailers take reports that Trump will slap extra duties on Chinese imports – and China’s almost hysterical response to those reports?

  • Trade with China. Triumph of hope over experience?

    The British Brexit debate, and the aftermath of Trump’s election, are bringing out widely contrasting views of China as a business partner. Some are hopelessly naive.

  • A bad week for Brexit.

    Theresa May keeps insisting “Brexit means Brexit”. But no-one in Britain can agree what Brexit means, how long it’ll take to get there or what Britain’s trade policy will be once it’s out of the EU.

  • Trump’s global trade policy: act like a New York garmento

    The developed world depends almost entirely on imports from poorer countries for its clothing. The world’s biggest apparel importer looks certain to transform its attitude to importing that apparel

  • Post Trump and Brexit: there’s more than one way to skin the international retailing cat

    While American voters were confounding practically all observers on November 8, on the other side of the Atlantic Britain’s Marks & Spencer unveiled a strategy that may be designed for a post-Brexit, post-Trump world.

  • Trump’s victory certainly doesn’t increase trading uncertainty.

    Practically every observer thought Hillary Clinton would win the US Presidential election this morning. Most went on to predict her mild hostility to further trade liberalisation meant the short-term prospects for global trade would be looking uncertain by now.
    Donald Trump, though, has been consistent and unambiguous about his trade policy.

  • Has Peak Internet hit Britain’s clothing stores?

    Between June and September 2016, something hit UK clothing stores that I don’t think’s ever happened in the history of selling clothes, anywhere, ever before.
    The internet’s share fell, consistently.
    Britain’s Office for National Statistics (ONS) had earlier reported that the internet accounted for 13.3% of all clothing stores’ national sales in the previous quarter (April-June).

  • Ethiopia violence undermines ‘visionary’ sourcing strategies

    The partial destruction by rioters last week of the Saygin Dima mill in Ethiopia perfectly illustrates the short-term superficiality of too many ‘visionary’ sourcing strategies.

  • Why voters don’t want any more global supply chains

    I spent the first six months of 2016 campaigning in Britain against Brexit. Not once did I hear a Brexit supporter attack global integration.

  • Bangladesh must face up to new industry threats

    Bangladesh’s garment industry seems unaware of the real threat the June/July terrorism incidents pose to its long-term viability.

  • Will automation kill Asia’s bullish apparel job hopes?

    In the past two months, public-sector forecasters  have made spectacularly different forecasts of job prospects in Asia’s apparel textile and apparel industries.

  • How does a CANZ-UK FTA stack up?

    As the UK government prepares the ground for new post-Brexit free trade deals, the first published ideas deal with Canada, Australia and New Zealand.

  • How Britain’s apparel industry should react to Brexit

    Most British comment about Brexit right now comes from grieving Remainers or Leavers who can’t believe their luck. Our industry must start planning to minimise the damage.

  • Brexit: is it a disaster?

    At 5 am today, UK voters for Brexit gained a majority.    British apparel brands and retailers can benefit – but only if they sharpen up their acts.

  • No other country’s going to step into China’s shoes

    In the first three months of this year, we saw a massive drop in Chinese apparel exports to the US. It doesn’t mean the end of China’s dominance.