Good Signs for Guatemalan Textile Industry

Guatemala’s textile industry has been practically reborn with the U.S. economic recovery.

Monday, April 5, 2010

As Guatemalan apparel businesses export 90% of their production to the U.S., they were strongly affected by that country’s economic crisis. Machinery was stopped and massive layoffs ensued. Exports fell 21% to just $1.1 billion.

Today’s outlook is far more promising, as apparel companies report that 100% of their production capacity up to June is already sold. In 2010, exports could close around $1.6 billion.

Some factories, like the former Supratel and Koramsa (Denimatrix), have changed ownership after being closed in the crisis, and are now reopening their doors and resuming production with new owners like Los Volcanes Group and Plains Cotton Cooperative Association.

For example, Plains Cotton produced 50.000 weekly jeans in May 2009, but is now manufacturing 150.000, and plans investment to increase capacity by 35% in 2011.

More on this topic

More Productivity in Textile Maquilas

May 2014

The implementation of lean manufacturing systems reduces from two hours to five minutes the time it takes to make a garment.

This system, introduced in the textile fair Apparel Sourcing Show 2014, in Guatemala, unifies in a set sequence the "value" steps of the manufacturing process, completely eliminating "waste" steps resulting in higher productivity and resource optimization so that the number of operators needed to make a garment is only nine instead of fifty.

Central American Textile Chain

October 2011

Guatemala's textile industry is changing from exporter of finished products to one that provides raw materials to manufacturers in other Central American countries.

The migration of maquila companies to Nicaragua, El Salvador and Honduras has generated an increased demand for industrial fabric and textile materials transforming the Guatemalan textile industry.

Guatemala: Textile Exports Recover

August 2010

After a big drop in 2009, sales abroad have seen a 17.6% increase in the first half of 2010.

According to information from Vestex, the Guatemalan association of textile and apparel manufacturers, in the first six months of this year the sector's exports totaled $705.2 million, 17.6% higher than the $599.6 million exported in the same period of 2009.

Guatemala: Apparel Exports Up 27% in April

May 2010

In April, Guatemala exported $82 million more textile goods than in the same period of 2009.

78.1% of them went to the United States, 17% to Central America and the rest to other countries such as Mexico and Canada.

Data from Vestex, the Textile and Apparel Commision, shows that apparel exports have been recovering sustainably since November 2009, after several years of negative growth.

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