Kenya hosts global textile and apparel industry players at ITME Africa & Middle East 2023 in Nairobi

Major players in the textile and apparel industry drawn India, Middle East and Africa have converged in Nairobi, Kenya, this week for the ITME Africa & Middle East 2023 summit and expo. The event, running from November 30 to December 2, 2023, has been organized by the India ITME Society, a non-profit industry body formed in 1980 to serve as a catalyst for technological excellence and currently recognized as the backbone of textile engineering industry in India.

Being held at the Kenyatta International Convention Centre (KICC) in Nairobi, ITME Africa & Middle East 2023 targets the textile technology and engineering sector players. The event seeks to connect the global business leaders with their counterparts from to Kenya and Africa.

Seema Srivastava, the Executive Director of India ITME Society said that the event, being hosted in Kenya for the first time, is an open and unique forum for all those involved in the textile industry value chain, including manufacturers, exporters, cotton farmers, investors, entrepreneurs, agents, dealers, as well as distributors looking at opportunities to expand their business in textiles or exploring diversification of their business into textiles.

“ITME Africa 2023 is sure platform to reboot, reinvent, and rejuvenate the Textile Industry of the continent with innovative solutions from across spinning, weaving, processing, and accessories segment. It has a wide range of innovative and sustainable solutions for eco-friendly and top-in-class textile chemicals and finishes,” said Srivastava.

“The showcase is a must-visit for yarn and fabric weavers, fashion designers, textile-integrated plant owners, and processers to get insights into the state-of-the-art textile and yarn processing industry. The new era of digital print technology is also on display. The spinning solutions at ITME Africa & Middle East are your best fit to upgrade and spin huge profits. The weaving and knitting advanced technology will help in adapting mass production and also reduce the consumption of water and power which will ensure to fabricate profitable business.”

Dr. Juma Mukwana, the PS, State Department for Industry in the Ministry of Industry Trade and Investments, and Mr Rohit Vadhwana, the Deputy High Commissioner of India to Kenya and the country’s Deputy Permanent Representative to UNEP and UN-HABITAT in Nairobi, were the Guests of Honor.

ITME Africa 2023 will give attendees a chance to meet and interact with vendors displaying the latest technology textile production – from machinery, accessories, components and services for spinning, weaving, processing, digital printing, garmenting, fashion and fabrics under one roof.

The ITME AFRICA and Middle East 2023 is expected to serve as a gateway for textile technology and engineering encompassing education, skills development, Joint Venture Investments, and sourcing of new markets.

Around 60 exhibitors from India will showcase efficient and high-class deliverable textile engineering and technology products providing value-for-money, comprehensive, modernizing options for manufacturing facilities. These include: Lakshmi Machine Works; Lakshmi Card Clothing Manufacturing Company; Laxmi Shuttleless Looms; Lathia Rubber Manufacturing Co.; Colorjet India Limited; Yamuna Machine Works; Simta Machinery; Erhardt+Leimer (India) Ltd; Elgi Electric And Industries Limited; Krsna Engineering Works; ATE Enterprises Private Limited; The Indian Card Clothing Co Ltd; and Kaeser Compressors Ltd. Also showcasing their latest solutions and innovations in textile manufacturing will be exhibitors from Kenya, Italy, China, Turkey, Egypt, Germany, Austria, Ethiopia, and Taiwan.

With almost a century of development, and a robust economy bolstered by an advances in textile technology, Kenya has set its sights on becoming Africa’s textile and apparel hub.

Kenya’s textile and apparel industry has also been boosted by the US government’s African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA), leading the country to record monthly exports to the tune of Kshs 4.5 billion (or Kshs 150 million per day) in 2022 according to a study by London-based Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA).

Notably, the AGOA programme has had a positive impact on the country’s export-processing zones (EPZs), especially in the textile and garment sector, with the East African country now ranked as the second-largest exporter of textile and apparel products to the US among AGOA beneficiaries.

The textile and apparel sub-sector has also benefited from steady growth in capital investment, with a 7.2 per cent increase from 2018 to 2022, during which 36 firms with a capital investment of Kshs 24.88 billion employed 66,260 people and generated exports worth Kshs 54.12 billion, according to media reports. In 2022, the textile and apparel sub-sector accounted for 7 per cent of Kenya’s total exports.


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