Domestic textiles to outnumber cheap imports
Tanzania is making efforts to protect its domestic textile
market by introducing them in local markets, instead of cheap
imports from other countries. More and more manufacturers were
moving sales to the regional markets of the East, Central and
Southern Africa than local markets. Instead of dealing with
second-hand clothes, traders can start buying and selling
locally manufactured garments to earn better profits.
The trade of second-hand clothes popularly known as (mitumba)
trade has become the mainstay of millions of informal traders.
It has in fact created employment down to the village level,
although essentially not contributing to the nations' economic
As used-clothes trade flourished, the profits of the domestic
textile industries declined and many of them have closed shop.
Their products could not compete with second-hand imported
clothes in terms of both quality or price.
An official with A to Z textiles, Mr Fadhili Mbise, said that
local manufacturers were capable of meeting local and
international market demands. He said that the manufacturers
sell more outside than in the local market and added that if the
total production was intended for the internal market, there was
enough capacity to meet domestic demands.
The prices of locally made garments were affordable for all
classes of people and sometimes cheaper than prices of imported
second-hand clothes. Taxing more second-hand clothes can be one
of the measures taken to reduce imports and foster locally
produced textiles and garments.