Compared with the average development level of the global textile and garment industry, the overall development of the local textile and garment industry in Africa lags behind. There is a great room for progress in the production of raw materials in the upstream, the spinning, dyeing and weaving in the midstream, and the manufacturing and sales of end products in the downstream, such as clothing and home textile.
Africa has many high-quality cotton producing areas, but the per unit yield of cotton is not high. Cotton is one of the important economic crops in Africa. Sub Saharan and north equatorial West Africa, represented by four cotton countries, namely Benin, Mali, Chad and Burkina Faso, are the important production areas of high-quality cotton raw materials in Africa, with cotton production accounting for about two-thirds of the whole Africa. The output of seed cotton in Africa accounts for about 6% of the world's total. At present, the annual output of cotton is about 1.4 million tons. With the continuous expansion of cotton planting area in Africa, the output is expected to further increase.
Although the planting area of cotton in Africa is increasing, the growth rate of production is relatively slow, mainly due to the weak capacity of cotton per unit area in Africa as a whole. Compared with the United States, India, China and other major cotton producing countries, the per unit yield of cotton in Africa is very low.
The value chain of Africa's textile industry is highly scattered, and the overall production capacity shows a downward trend. The industrial development is mainly driven by FDI. At present, most African countries have not formed a complete textile industry chain, and in recent years, the overall textile production capacity is also declining.
At present, the development of textile industry in Africa is mainly driven by foreign investment. With Ethiopia and other countries starting to attract foreign investment in textile industry and making progress in stages, African governments have begun to follow suit and launch corresponding incentive policies, hoping to develop their own textile industry with the help of foreign capital, technology and other forces, and improve employment rate.
Africa's textile and clothing trade deficit is obvious, with rapid growth. According to the relevant data of COMTRADE, in 2010, Africa's textile and garment exports totaled 14.8 billion US dollars and imports amounted to 18.1 billion US dollars. In 2016, Africa's textile and garment exports dropped to 13.6 billion US dollars, while imports increased to 21.5 billion US dollars. The trade deficit between 2010 and 2016 increased from US $3.3 billion to US $7.9 billion, with a growth rate of 139% and a compound annual growth rate of 5.7%. It can be seen that the overall production capacity of textile and clothing in Africa is declining, but the consumption market is growing slowly, and the trend of increasing demand is obvious.