10 July 2020 — Position Papers
Joint Declaration on the Economic Impact of COVID-19 on the Textile, Clothing, Leather & Footwear Industries
The European Textile, Clothing, Leather, and Footwear (TCLF) industries are major players of the European Union’s economy, encompassing 200,000 companies, generating over 200 billion Euros turnover, and employing nearly 2 million people in 2019. They are part of the interlinked value chains of fashion and high-end industries, making the EU the world leader in creativity and a pioneer in industrial innovation.
The COVID-19 health and economic crisis had an immediate and serious impact on TCLF companies and employees alike. The disruption of supply chains and the shutdown of retail outlets completely destabilised these industries by dramatically reducing sales, leading to extreme contractions of revenues and financial distress for TCLF companies across all value chains. As a result, factories were suddenly closed, putting thousands of people in temporary – and less temporary – unemployment, slowing down the productive capacities of companies and weakening the growth of these sectors mostly made up of SMEs.
The risk that the effects of the crisis will linger even when lockdown restrictions have been fully lifted is high: the European TCLF industries are mostly consumer goods industries and are therefore highly sensitive to the economic well-being in major global marketplaces, and in particular of EU Member States and purchasing power of EU citizens. The recessionary market and the decrease in demand that will follow the immediate crisis put the TCLF companies and employees in major peril.
Read the full Joint Decleration HERE!