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Sewing Success?: Employment and Wages of the End of the Multi- fibre Arrangement GACEVEDO@WORLDBANK.ORG. Motivation. Apparel and Poverty 70% of world apparel exports came from low income countries in 2008 Apparel provides entry to formal employment for the unskilled, the poor and women

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  1. Sewing Success?:Employment and Wagesof the End of the Multi-fibre ArrangementGACEVEDO@WORLDBANK.ORG

  2. Motivation • Apparel and Poverty • 70% of world apparel exports came from low income countries in 2008 • Apparel provides entry to formal employment for the unskilled, the poor and women • The Multi-fibre Arrangement (MFA) was a Global System of Quotas • Controlled apparel and textile trade • Phased out with final end in December 2004 • Implications/Predictions of the end of MFA • Reallocation of production across countries • Increase in exports • Decrease in apparel prices

  3. Characteristics of the Apparel Industry • In nearly all countries, most workers in apparel sector are women • Vertically Integrated (Value Chains) • Buyer Driven • Wage sensitive but also other factors relevant • “Better” Jobs • Higher wages ( and wage premia) than alternative • Better working conditions than alternatives • Gateway for women into manufacturing

  4. Apparel employs unskilled and women Source: Enterprise Surveys Source:Enterprise Surveys.

  5. Wages, part of the story

  6. Country selection • Nine Countries: • South Asia: Bangladesh, India, Sri Lanka, and Pakistan; • East Asia and Pacific: Cambodia and Vietnam; • Latin America and the Caribbean: Honduras and Mexico; • North Africa: Morocco. • Criteria for selection: • Significance of apparel in overall economy • Regional coverage • Position in global value chain • Data availability • China is not included

  7. Methodology/approach • Background papers on each of the countries • Changes in exports, market shares, unit prices • Detailed analysis of the industry before and after the MFA • Policies implemented by countries • Employment and Wage analysis ( Household, labor and firm survey) • Expansion/contraction of industry • Change in female intensity • Wage premia in apparel • Male-female wage differentials • Working conditions

  8. Across country changes • Changes in Total Exports • Changes in Countries’ Market Shares • Changes in Global Apparel Prices

  9. Across Country Changes (cont) • Increased total exports: • from US$41.4 billion in 2004 to US$58.7 billion in 2008 in 9 country studies • Significant increase in Bangladesh, Cambodia, India, Vietnam; moderate in Honduras, Morocco, Pakistan and Sri Lanka; decline in Mexico • Reallocation of production: • increase in market share - Bangladesh, Cambodia, India and Vietnam; • decline- Mexico, Honduras and Morocco • Decline in apparel prices due to • increased global supply; • highly cost-competitive exports from China

  10. Within country changes • Changes in Employment • Changes in Wage premia • Changes in working conditions • Changes in the positioning of the Global Value Chain

  11. Within Country Changes(cont) • Employment changes over 2004-2008 : • Increased: Bangladesh - 40%, Cambodia - 20%, India - 48%, Pakistan – 8%, Vietnam – 50% • Declined: Honduras - 3%, Mexico - 35%, Morocco – 8%, Sri Lanka -12% • Wage premia changes, in general, coincided with employment changes : • Increased in Bangladesh, India, Pakistan, Vietnam • Declined in Honduras, Mexico, Morocco, Sri Lanka • Only in Cambodia wage premium declined while employment went up • Change in value chain position : • Upgrading or moved up: Bangladesh, India, Morocco, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Vietnam • No change: Cambodia, Honduras, Mexico • Change in working conditions

  12. Main Findings

  13. upgrading and employment * No upgrading within apparel and textile sectors but upgrading to other sectors. ** Upgrading not as substantial as in other cases. *** Upgrading more substantial than in other case.

  14. Conclusions • Export gains in the apparel industry were not simply due to industry relocation from higher-wage countries to lower-wage countries • Wages explain par of the export changes; • Upgrading, ownership, domestic policies also seemed to play a role • Changes in exports usually, but not always, matched changes in wages and employment • Wage premia rise in countries that “gain” and declined in countries that “lose”. Thus, double impact on workers – employment and wages • Promoting “upgrading” seems to be necessary for sustainable competitiveness in the apparel sector but may adversely affect unskilled and poor

  15. THANK YOU !

  16. Our approach • Analyze global change in apparel production • Identify key countries • Use available data to examine employment and wages following the end of the MFA • Identify policy implications

  17. Upgrading in the apparel value chain • Functional upgrading: Increasing the range of functions or changing the mix of activities to higher-value tasks – India, Sri Lanka • Product upgrading: Shifting to more sophisticated products with higher unit prices – Morocco, Sri Lanka • Channel upgrading: Diversifying to new buyers or new geographic or product markets – Bangladesh, Sri Lanka • Supply chain upgrading: Establishing backward manufacturing linkages within the supply chain – India, Pakistan • Process upgrading: Reorganizing the production system or introducing new technologies to gain efficiency – India, Vietnam

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