Browsing: mitumba

Kenya's textile industry

A recent report has revealed that the ban on second-hand clothing, also known as mitumba, might not enhance Kenya’s textile industry as previously anticipated. The report commissioned by the Mitumba Consortium Association of Kenya (MCAS) on the Second-Hand Clothing Industry in the East Africa Community has cautioned against protectionism towards importing second-hand clothing.…

A textile company in Ethiopia

Textiles and clothing are an essential part of everyday life and an important sector in the global economy, and more so Textile in Africa.

According to a report titled Circular economy in Africa: Fashion and textiles, in sub-Saharan Africa, the combined apparel and footwear market is estimated at $31 billion. The textile industry in Africa is estimated to grow at a compound annual growth rate of approximately 5 percent between 2019 and 2024. In addition, the production of cotton accounts for almost 7 percent of all employment in some low-income countries.

African countries boasted thriving textile industries in the 1970s and early 1980s. That was until the African market was flooded by what Kenyans call Mitumba (second-hand clothes), also called chagua in Rwanda, and salaula in Zambia, dealing the textile industry a blow leading to its deterioration.…

Second hand clothes bales. Africa has been fighting a losing battle in banning second hand clothing which is accused of killing local textile industries.

The second-hand clothes business is huge in Africa raking in billions especially in Kenya, Tanzania, Ghana, Uganda and Benin. 

These five countries are among the world's biggest markets for used clothing sold to the masses due to affordability. So big is the business in Kenya that importers saw a 4.9 per cent increase from US$157.4 million in 2018 to US$164.8 million in 2019. 

Data by the Economic Survey 2020 shows that Kenyan traders imported 185,000 tonnes of used apparel in 2019 alone. That same year, the second-hand clothes industry popularly known as Mitumba contributed KShs12 billion (US$110 million) translating to US$10 million per month.…

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Mitumba bales ready for dispatch. Kenya is one of the largest importers of second-hand clothes in Sub-Saharan Africa.

The annual value of this trade was reported in 2019 to be on average Ksh 18 billion (US$180 million) which is less than 1 per cent of the total country’s imports. The total imports of textiles in Kenya were valued at around Ksh 131 billion (US$1.3 billion) depicting that the second-hand clothes represented 12.5 per cent of the country’s total imports.…