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Adding value to the garment sector

CAMBODIA will hold its first ASEAN-standard certification test for the Kingdom’s pattern-makers next week, a move that insiders say will help improve the value of the domestic garment industry.

Pattern-making involves creating prototype garments for mass production, but much of the work is presently sourced outside of the Kingdom, according to Mona Tep, president of the Garment Industry Productivity Centre.

The garment industry could benefit from completing patterns domestically, as factories incur large costs shipping products back and forth between factories and overseas headquarters.

“We’ve found pattern-making is something very much needed in the domestic industry,” she said.

She said that Cambodia’s garment manufacturing industry currently consisted of “cut, make and trim”. Value-added production – and its ensuing larger profits and higher wages – required increased skill levels from domestic workers.

Some 28 to 30 percent of the cost of a garment purchased from a store presently comes from the preproduction phase, of which pattern-makers were a key component, she said.

Private sector officials said yesterday they would like to increase the number of certified Cambodian pattern makers, as it cuts down on costs.
“Of course we would like to see more [domestic pattern-makers],” said Lee Thai Khit of June Textile Company yesterday.

The certification test will take place on Tuesday, overseen by the Garment Manufacturers Association in Cambodia and the ASEAN Federation of Textile Industries.

Under the umbrella of USAID-funded Cambodia Skills Development Centre, GIPC is also looking to introduce classes in pattern-making.

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