16:49:30 local time CHINA
* Fujian spots cotton imports quality low:
Fujian province’ cotton imports rose sharply from 2010, but the quality of the cotton is not good enough, China news.com reported on Friday.
All the 18 batches of cotton imported after 2011, valued at $16,270,000, failed to meet national standards, Fuzhou Entry-Exit Inspection and Quarantine stated.
According to the report, cotton imports have two major problems: Some foreign merchants sold cotton short in weight, or mix cotton stocks with new ones; Some trade contracts signed beforehand leading to a lower cotton quality. read more.
* Peru lifts antidumping duties on Chinese textiles:
Peru is lifting the antidumping duties levied on Chinese blended fabrics, the South American country’s competition watchdog said Friday.
The cancellation goes into effect on Saturday, concerning rayon-viscose and cotton-fiber fabrics among others, the National Institute for the Defense of Competition and Intellectual Property Protection said in a statement.
The antidumping duties imposed on Chinese textiles were introduced in 2009 by the Peruvian Anti-Dumping and Subsidies Commission. The commission ordered a review of the measure in March 2012.
Peru and China have signed a free trade agreement. The agreement, which went into effect in 2010, has promoted bilateral trade. to read.
* China sees huge gap in future pension payments: official:
China’s social security fund manager on Friday warned of a “huge capital gap” amid future waves of pension payments to retirees as the country enters a period of rapid aging.
“The current size of the social security fund fails to match China’s gross economic scale and is far from the level that can fill the gap in the pension fund balance,” Dai Xianglong, chairman of the National Council for Social Security Fund (NCSSF), said at a forum held here Friday. read more.
15:49:30 local time VIET NAM
* Vietnam footwear export rises to $2.07bln in jan-april – custom:
Vietnam’s footwear export is estimated to have brought back $2.07 billion forex in the first 4 months of this year, up of 14.9% from a year earlier, the Vietnam General Department of Customs said on its release on May 18.
In April alone, the country earned $583 million, the data showed.
EU remained to be largest importer of Vietnamese footwear in the period with $734 million, up 5.1% on year. Followed by the U.S. with $626 million in the period, up 16.3% on year. read more.
15:49:30 local time THAILAND
* Difference of opinion: Why the Thai economy might not perform very well this year:
The biggest threat to every economic forecaster is the “lazy consensus”, ie, the refusal to object to an accepted market view even if there is contradictory evidence.
If the consensus is later proved wrong, he or she simply says that other forecasters were incorrect as well. Hence, economic projections of different research houses are not likely to deviate widely. And that is also the case for this year’s economic projection for Thailand. read more.
* Italian handbag maker excited about growth:
Furla, an Italian luxury bag brand, is planning to double its business in Asia in the next three years, chief executive officer Eraldo Poletto said.
Central Marketing Group opened the first Furla flagship store in Bangkok’s Central World shopping complex in March, and is planning to open a second one at the Central Embassy mall next year. Furla plans to open seven boutique outlets in Bangkok and one in Phuket in the next three years.
Poletto said Furla was a family-owned business founded in 1927, and the brand’s motto was always to strive for the best quality and good Italian craftsmanship and seek to expand globally. Furla bags are already available in 63 markets around the world.
“About 27 per cent of our business is based in Italy, with 26 per cent in Japan, 12 per cent [elsewhere] in Asia and 8 per cent in the United States,” Poletto said.
“We want to double our business in Asia to around 30 per cent in three years.”
15:49:30 local time CAMBODIA
* Unions accuse Singapore garment factory of violating accord:
Unions accused Singapore-owned SL Garment Processing (Cambodia) Ltd Saturday of violating a one-day old agreement.
A statement by the Coalition of Cambodia Apparel Workers Democratic Unions said the company refused to let several union representatives to return to work on Saturday. The coalition vowed to continue action against the company.
About 8,000 workers from the factory have been on strike for two weeks. On Friday, management, workers and government officials agreed on many points in a list of 12 demands. to read.
* Garment exports almost triple in 10 years:
Garment exports have almost tripled over the past 10 years with the sector providing at least 335,400 jobs, especially to the provincial poor, the Ministry of Commerce said.
According to the Garment Manufacturers Association in Cambodia, exports came to $3.31 billion in 2011, up from $1.16 billion 10 years earlier.
Exports to the United States more than doubled from $828 million to $1.76 billion in the same period while shipments to the European Union jumped from $309 million to $898 million. Exports to Canada surged from $6 million to $311 million. to read.
16:49:30 local time SINGAPORE
* New minimum wage increase likely to hurt small businesses:
The National Wage Council’s recommendation for a built-in wage increase this year came as no surprise to businesses.
But while larger corporations are able to absorb this extra cost, smaller firms said they are going to have a tougher time grappling with additional cost constraints.
Earning just S$1,000 a month, these workers may soon see an extra S$50 in their next payslip.
Large corporates said they are generally able to offset higher wage costs through improvements in work processes, and training to improve productivity.
Phillip Overmyer, CEO, Singapore International Chamber of Commerce, said: “The companies that are doing this are not so constrained that they can’t pay a little bit more. I think people are recognising that somehow we need to straighten that out, especially at a time when we’re also moving foreigners out.” read more.
15:19:30 local time Myanmar
* Myanmar protests an opportunity to show more reform:
Five days of street protests over chronic power shortages present Myanmar’s reformist government with a headache and an opportunity.
Police forcibly dispersed protesters in the central Myanmar town of Pyi yesterday, a heavy-handed response reminiscent of the previous military junta that could fuel grievances among an impoverished and long-neglected people. (…)
Thousands of workers have been striking for better pay and conditions at factories on Yangon’s outskirts.
“Because there is not enough electricity, the workers from the garment industry will lose their jobs,” said protest organiser Han Win Aung. read more.
14:49:30 local time BANGLA DESH
* B’desh seeks Pak investment in cotton & yarn sector:
Bangladesh Commerce Minister GM Quader has called upon Pakistani investors to invest in partnership projects in Bangladesh’s cotton and yarn sector.
Speaking at the opening of the second ‘Made in Pakistan Exhibition 2012’ organized by Rawalpindi Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Pakistan, the Minister said Pakistani entrepreneurs can consider investing in some of their speciality sectors like cotton and yarn in Bangladesh. read more.
14:19:30 local time INDIA
* Victoria’s Secret bras uplift rural Indian women:
Indian villager Jaya places the bright pink, sequined, moulded C-cupped designer bra under the needle of her sewing machine and carefully stitches the seams together.
The padded “Very Sexy” push-up bra that 22-year-old Jaya sews is for American lingerie retailer Victoria’s Secret – designed to give a “boost” to buyers in hundreds of high-fashion boutiques across the United States.
But a world away in this traditional rice-growing region of southern India, these luxurious bras are — in a different way — enhancing the lives of poor rural women.
“I knew nothing but the village before,” says Jaya, sitting behind her sewing machine on the busy factory floor of textile manufacturer, Intimate Fashions, in India’s Tamil Nadu state.
“My parents just wanted me married as quickly as possible. They never saw me as an asset, just a burden. They did not think a woman could earn money, but look at me,” she says, the scent of jasmine emanating from the bunch of white flowers in her plaited hair. read more.
* Adidas India confiscates goods from warehouses:
Adidas India has confiscated goods from three of the four ‘secret’ warehouses where it alleged that its former top executives had stashed products worth Rs. 63 crore, two persons with knowledge of the development said.
“When the police went to search the alleged secret warehouses it found that the sporting goods company had on its own gone ahead and confiscated the goods in three warehouses,” one of them said. The police have now restricted Adidas from opening the fourth warehouse, the person added.
In an FIR filed on Monday, the German sports goods maker, which owns Adidas and Reebok brands, alleged that former Reebok India MD Subhinder Singh Prem and former COO Vishnu Bhagat were involved in a series of frauds that may have cost the parent company Rs. 870 crore. read more.
* Reebok India under I-T Dept scanner:
In more trouble for Reebok India, the I-T department has launched a probe into its finances and has begun issuing notices to its executives after an alleged Rs 870-crore fraud case was detected by the company against two of its top officials.
The Gurgaon police has already constituted a Special Investigation Team (SIT) to probe the case. read more.
* Cotton may yield space to guar, oilseeds:
The acreage under cotton may take a dip this year after having touched a record high last year. Hit by the volatility in prices induced by the flip-flop in export policy, cotton growers are likely to switch over to other lucrative crops such as oilseeds – soyabean and groundnut – and guar among others.
Trade and industry sources expect cotton area to come down by 10 per cent to 20 per cent in 2012-13. Cotton area had touched a record high of 121.91 lakh hectares in 2011-12 season that ends June 30, a growth of 40 per cent in the past seven years.
13:49:30 local time PAKISTAN
* Pakistan’s polyester yarn, cotton fabric imports surge:
There has been a huge rise in the quantity of polyester yarn and cotton fabric imported by Pakistan, as the country’s domestic production suffers owing to the continuing power and energy crisis, a senior official of All Pakistan Textile Mills Association (APTMA) has said.
Mr. Gohar Ejaz, Group Leader of APTMA, said they would have welcomed such rise in imports if it would have arisen from rise in demand, but not while it is cutting the share of the domestic textile industry. read more.
* Continuing gas shortage dismays Pak Textile Committee:
In a recent briefing, the Pakistan National Assembly’s Standing Committee on Textile Industry was shocked to learn that gas shortages would continue to plague the textile industry for a further four months.
The committee was informed that the textile sector will continue to face a 500mmcfd gas shortfall and will face load management till September.
The committee directed the government to provide uninterrupted gas to the textile sector, especially to those involved in exports from the industry. to read.
13:49:30 local time UZBEKISTAN
* Rights Defender Threatened, Attacked:
Uzbek authorities should ensure the security of the human rights activist Gulshan Karaeva, who was attacked and threatened after she publicly refused to become a government informant, Human Rights Watch said today. (…)
Karaeva, 34, is one of the country’s youngest human rights activists. She has repeatedly been targeted for her outspoken human rights work.
Based in Karshi, she has reported on the practice of forced child labor in the cotton sector and the ill-treatment and torture of imprisoned human rights activist Gaibullo Jalilov.
Together with another Karshi-based activist, Nodir Akhatov, Karaeva was detained by local police and threatened with criminal charges in the fall of 2011, while attempting to document the use of forced child laborto harvest cotton in southern Uzbekistan. read more.