Vietnam sold $29 billion worth of apparel to the world in 2020, while Bangladesh’s ready-made garment exports were valued at $28 billion, the World Trade Organisation’s (WTO) latest World Trade Statistical Review shows.
Bangladesh had been the world’s second largest garment exporter since 2010, according to WTO rankings.
Garment exports from both Vietnam and Bangladesh fell in 2020 due to Covid-19, but Bangladesh’s exports declined at a faster pace than Vietnam’s, the WTO report said. The Southeast Asian nation was a particular beneficiary of orders shifted from China at the very beginning of the pandemic.
China remains the world’s largest exporter of apparel with 31.6 percent of the global total, despite a 7 percent year-on-year drop in 2020 of the total value of its apparel exports, to $142 billion.
Surging demand and supply disruptions are driving up prices for raw materials, labour and shipping in fashion’s largest manufacturing hub.