Industry Data

Textile, Apparel and Footwear Industry Performance
in 2010

  • 1,2% of Moldova's GDP;
  • ~20% of manufacturing industry employees;
  • 19% of exports;
  • 6.4% of industrial output.

Textile, apparel and footwear sectors of the Republic of Moldova are an important part of the country's economy. Fashion is an industry with long-standing traditions in manufacturing and exporting a wide range of products. Since 1990, this important industry has been restructured, upgraded and re-equipped, in order to transition and quicker adapt to the market economy.

The fashion industry has recorded a continuous growth since year 2000, significantly outperforming the overall development of Moldova's industry. Textile, apparel and footwear sectors contribution to total industrial production grew up to 6, 4 percent in year 2010. These sectors also significantly to Moldovan exports. Textile and apparel (T&A) exports rose from little more than 16 percent in 2003 to over 20 percent in 2010, with garment products constituting majority of T&A and footwearexports. In terms of employment, in recent years the T&A and footwearsectors as a whole had on average nearly 21,000 productive employees, constituting roughly 19,4 percent of all industrial sector jobs. Most of these jobs are rural-based and occupied by young women who make up 85-95 percent of all T&A workers.

Manufacture of Textile, Apparel and Footwear Industry, million lei

industry data

Source: Moldovan Statistics

Textile Sector

The textile industry of Moldova is represented mainly by rug industry with an annual production of around 45-50 million USD. Moldova does not produce any textile materials, such as yarns or fabrics, with a few exceptions. The carpet manufacturers are primarily export-oriented, the two major ones being Floare-Carpet and Moldabela (with affiliated yarn manufacturer Filatura-Ungheni). Floare-Carpet is specialized only on the production of wool rugs and the second one is specialized on wool and synthetic fiber rugs. Main wool supplier for rugs production is New Zealand. Only around 10-15% out of the total volume of supplied wool is bought locally. Synthetic fibers are imported. Out of fibers is produced synthetic yarn and then the rugs are spun. Floare-carpet factory has an integrated mill and Moldabela factory buys yarn from the sister mill. Both companies enclose the whole value chain. The majority rugs (78%) are sold to European countries, around 20% - in Moldova, and a small portion (2%) – on other markets, such as US and Japan.


Value of industrial production, by types of activities

2003

2004

2005

2006

2007

2008

2009

2010

Industry–total,
millionlei,currentprices

15,963.1

17,591.1

20,770.2

22,370.7

26,173.5

29,988.4

22,643.9

28,140.1

Manufactureoftextiles,
millionlei,currentprices

215.4

242.2

369.2

586.2

670.8

626.1

487.6

548.2

Manufactureoftextiles,
year-on-yeargrowth%

12%

52%

59%

14%

-7%

-22%

12%

Theshareintotalindustry,%

1.45%

1.38%

1.78%

2.62%

2.56%

2.09%

2.15%

1.95%


Apparel Sector

The apparel (garment) industry of Moldova is largely export-oriented, being specialized on Cut and Make (C&M) and Cut, Make, Trim (CMT) services (with over 90 percent of companies working under these terms). Annually Moldova produces about 70-75 million USD worth of apparel products and services. Demand for such services in EU has been feeding the growth of this industry in Moldova, and has significantly expanded over the past ten years, as a result of the migration of C&M services to more advantageous locations: initially in North-Eastern Europe, then Balkans, South-Eastern Europe, Romania, and now, more and more in Moldova due to the following factors:

  • labor cost still attractive (from the standpoint of cost per minute)
  • proximity to Europe (key buyer): 3-7 days delivery time
  • small-scale manufacturers able to perform small orders at needed delivery time
  • good quality

C&M services for manufacturing fabric and knitwear garments are primarily for European clients. Key countries are Germany, Italy, Belgium, UK, Netherlands, France, Austria and lately Romania. Some manufacturer have moved to higher value added services – Full Product (FOB) and even Private Label – which is more convenient for the European and CIS clients.

Moldovan C&M manufacturers produce a large range of garments (fashionable/branded cloths for men, women, children, underwear, home wear, uniforms etc.) from different types of fabrics.Most companies do sewn manufacturing; however, there are a few knitwear enterprises.

Over the last ten years, the number of companies in apparel industry has increased nearly 4 times and now constitutes over 160 companies. Most apparel companies are small or medium-sized. Only a few companies are big ones with employees counting more than 500 persons. Small and medium-sized companies are rather flexible and well-adjusted to the major changes in the foreign orders. These are continuously smaller (from tens to hundreds of pieces per order) contain a large variety of styles (from 10 to 20-22) and the delivery term has shortened (in most of the cases – up to 1 week).All apparel companies are private ones.Apparel manufacturers are distributed throughout the entire country, but it is felt a geographic concentration in vicinity to some cities that are actually the centers of some zones of the republic and namely:

  • in Chisinau and its vicinity –central zone of the country – 53,3%,
  • in Balti and its vicinity –northern zone– 29,3%,
  • in Cahul and its vicinity–southern zone – 8,7%,
  • inComrat and its vicinity –UTA Gagauzia -8,7%.

Value of industrial production, by types of activities

2003

2004

2005

2006

2007

2008

2009

2010

Industry – total,
million lei current prices

15,963.1

17,591.1

20,770.2

22,370.7

26,173.5

29,988.4

22,643.9

28,140.1

Manufacture of wearing apparel;
dressing and dyeing of furs,
million lei, current prices

377

491.6

577.7

729.2

897.2

902.9

800.5

921.5

Manufacture of wearing apparel;
dressing and dyeing of furs, year-on-year growth, %

30%

18%

26%

23%

1%

-11%

15%

The share of wearing apparel;
dressing and dyeing of furs in
total industry, %

2.36%

2.79%

2.78%

3.26%

3.43%

3.01%

3.54%

3.27%


Footwear &Accessories Sector

The footwear and accessories sector in Moldova contributes roughly 0.3% of GDP and 4.5% of exports. The industry employs an estimated 4,000 people in about 60 companies, located throughout Moldova, with concentrations in Chisinau, Soroca and Transnistria.The operators in this industry follow basically three types of business models: contract manufacturing for the EU market, production and distribution on the local market, production and export to Central Asia and regional markets (such as Russia, Kazakhstan).

Moldova accumulates sufficient experience in footwear production sector; technological level of the footwear and accessories companies permits them to produce competitive products. This fact is confirmed by long-standing cooperation between Moldovan companies and renowned foreign brands from Italy, Germany, UK, France and Romania. The fashion accessories industry, specifically the production of footwear, handbags, synthetic and leather goods, creates significant exports for Moldova.

There is an established supply chain of components for footwear which are imported from Italy, Germany, Spain, Poland, Ukraine, Romania and Turkey.The price per minute in the footwear industry is lower than that of other countries in central Europe, the Baltic States, Ukraine and Belarus. Most of footwear and accessories companies are small or medium sized, and capable to handle small production volumes with ease.


Value of industrial production, by types of activities

Million lei, current prices

2003

2004

2005

2006

2007

2008

2009

2010

Industry – total,
million lei, current prices

15963.1

17591.1

20770.2

22370.7

26173.5

29988.4

22643.9

28140.1

Manufacture of leather,
leather products and manufacture
of footwear, million lei, current prices

156.3

160.2

204.3

248.1

260.6

300.1

234.1

333.1

Manufacture of leather,
leather products and manufacture
of footwear, year-on-year growth, %

2%

28%

21%

5%

15%

-22%

42%

The shareof leather,
leather products and manufacture
of footwear in total industry, %

0.98%

0.91%

0.98%

1.11%

1.00%

1.00%

1.03%

1.18%