Apparel Sourcing Intelligence - Worldwide

Confusion over direction of Chinese apparel exports

The value of China’s apparel exports (expressed as US dollars) in March fell 20.2% on March 2014, meaning the country’s apparel exports for the first (Jan-March) quarter rose 1.6% on 2014.

China export growthThis is a better performance than China’s exports showed in the first three months of 2014: annual trends typically take till April before becoming clear.

The trend is broadly comparable both with upstream textile exports and with Chinese exports as a whole. It is unclear whether the Lunar New Year timings have simply confused the data, the US port chaos has distorted the timing of exports – or whether this really is the long-predicted start of real decline in China’s exports.

The likelihood, we suspect, is that the significant number here is the 2% growth for the quarter: the growth in China’s apparel exports is slowing sharply – but has not yet turned into real decline.