European Economic and Social Committee (EESC)
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European fashion industry identifies strategies for competitiveness
About 75 representatives of the fashion industries associations, education institutions, companies, designers, and financial institutions met in Brussels on 13th April 2012.
In his opening speech, Director General Daniel Calleja Crespo underlined the importance of the fashion industries to the EU economy and recalled the growth opportunities that exist for them notwithstanding the economic crisis.
The participants then discussed the challenges faced by the fashion industries and identified the following ways to promote sustainable growth and competitiveness:
After conducting a study on the European fashion industries, the European Commission will prepare as a next step a Communication on the competitiveness of the fashion industries.
This document will set out main lines of actions and measures at EU, national and industry level. In addition, the Commission's proposal for the Programme for the Competitiveness of enterprises and SMEs (COSME) includes €87m for design-based consumer goods.
The fashion industries account for 5 million jobs and contribute to 3% of the EU GDP. Fashion industries are considered as the whole value chain starting from the manufacturing of materials, through design and production of a broad range of fashion goods until their sale to final consumers.
Presentations from the workshop which was co-organised by the European Commission and the Employer's Group of the Economic and Social Committee are available below.