The Greek textile industry suffered a negative year in 2011, with exports of clothing and accessories falling by 2.6 pct to 776.9 million euros, while exports of textile fabrics fell 5.0 pct to 406.7 million euros, Eleftherios Kourtalis president of the Federation of Greek textile industrialists (SEBK) said on Wednesday.
Addressing the annual general assembly of the federation, Kourtalis said that behind these figures for 2011 smaller or larger business drama was hiding, and in general less jobs, less enterprises, less workers and less state revenue.
“The Greek textile industry is suffering the effects of a degrading process reflecting a long-term de-industrialization of the country, unfair competition and a significant decline in domestic demand as a result of an economic crisis,” Kourtalis told the Federation’s members.
He noted that the industry was facing the challenge of restructuring, modernizing, with the aim to boost its export activity –an one-way road towards sustainable growth. He urged the state to support the Greek textile industry by strengthening liquidity in the market, immediate payment of all state debts to private enterprises, reducing employers’ social contributions by 50 pct over the next three years at least, cutting electricity bills by 50 pct, a more efficient state procurement system, cutting corporate taxes and drastically reducing bureaucracy, corruption and the black economy.
Kourtalis stressed that the country urgently needed a strong and stable government which –in cooperation with productive classes- will draft a new growth policy and allow the fiscal consolidation of the country.