Table of Contents
ISRN Economics
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 941695, 23 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.5402/2012/941695
Research Article

Effects of the Global Crisis on the Egyptian Textiles and Clothing Sector: A Blessing in Disguise?

Department of Economics, Faculty of Economics and Political Science, Cairo University, Giza, Egypt

Received 24 April 2012; Accepted 23 May 2012

Academic Editors: W. Groot and R. Rasiah

Copyright © 2012 Amirah El-Haddad. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

The textile and clothing (TC) sector has not escaped the slowdown in Egypt in response to the crisis. But it has been in decline since 2001 in response to a changing global environment. Exports, which have been surviving on account of the Qualifying Industrial Zones (QIZ) and Euro-Mediterranean Partnership agreements, have been hit hard by the crisis. Domestic sales are in decline as a result of liberalization, and non-QIZ exporter—unprotected by the agreement—have been turning to the domestic market in competition with non-exporters. If domestic sales continue to decline, without being offset by growth in exports, the industry will continue to decline. To deal with the crisis, short-run mitigation policies can be considered as ensuring banks credit, and paying social insurance for workers in distressed firms. But the sector is suffering from inherent structural problems resulting in high costs. In other words, the crisis has exacerbated the shrinkage of an already struggling industry, so a longer run strategy is needed beyond the crisis response, comprising moving up the clothing industry value chain, conditional export incentives, skills upgrading and undergoing comprehensive institutional reform.