Economic Update

T&C industry evolution during the second quarter
of 2022 and short-term prospects

Tougher market conditions did not yet impact T&C turnover in the second quarter of 2022.
However, business expectations for the months ahead fell sharply, reflecting energy-related challenges and increased economic uncertainty in the T&C industry.

Compared with the same period of 2021, economic performances in the textile & clothing industry continued to improve significantly in the first half of 2022. The clothing segment recorded a 10,1% growth in turnover in the 2nd quarter, while textiles turnover grew by 2.2%. Export performance improved as well, with +8.4% for textiles and 0.7% for clothing. Imports remained more or less stable, with a remarkable shift from China to Bangladesh taking over as our main supplier of apparel products. This growth in turnover did not result in any significant changes in the employment situation.

Looking forward into the business expectations, the boosting effect of reopening of the economy after the Covid-pandemic is clearly fading. All sectors of the economy are being negatively affected by high inflation and persistent uncertainty, notably related to gas supply disruptions and the broader geopolitical repercussions of a long-lasting war. The same factors are expected to continue to weigh on EU activity during the winter of 2022/23.

As a result, the EU Business Confidence* indicator for the months ahead deteriorated in the T&C sectors, reflecting these energy-related challenges and increased economic uncertainty. Managers’ confidence fell sharply in the textile industry (-6.3 point), going markedly below its long-term average and to pre-Covid level in Q4 2019. The indicator in the clothing sector decreased more moderately (-1.1 point).

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