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Scottish Textile News

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  • 21-Nov-2019 2:36 PM | Anonymous

    Textiles Scotland, part of UKFT, held the first meeting of the new Industry Leadership Group (ILG) this week at MacRoberts LLP in Glasgow. The ILG, which reflects the size and diversity of the fashion and textile industry in Scotland, exists to create a broad strategy for the industry in Scotland and act as an interface between the industry and government. 

    The ILG comprises Fiona Waldron of Heriot Watt University, menswear designer Kestin Hare, Jan Young of Barrie Knitwear, Simon Cotton of Johnstons of Elgin, Aidan Queen, Schofields Dyers & Finishers, James Lang of the Scottish Leather Group, James Dracup of Macnaughtons, Solli Brodie of BeFab Be Creative, Vixy Rae of Stewart Christie, Lorna Macaulay of Harris Tweed Authority, Jean-Christophe Granier of the Wilkie Group, Iain Laird of Begg and Co, Paul Walker of Walker Slater and Jan Young of Barrie Knitwear.

    Simon Cotton, CEO of Johnstons of Elgin, was elected as chair of the group.

    The ILG agreed to focus on developing an export strategy and a skills strategy that focuses on all aspects of the industry from manufacturing to design to the provision of education and training.

    For more information contact: info@textilescotland.com

  • 13-Nov-2019 4:55 PM | Anonymous

    The Department for International Trade (DIT) is inviting UK-based companies to register their interest to submit exhibits as part of the UK Pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai.

    The exhibition will cover the UK’s history, key influencers, how we collaborate with other nations, and the future innovations in areas such as AI, Space, Robotics, education and R&D, telling the story of the UK from 1851 through to 2050. It will feature the UK’s world-class products and services, such as UK fashion and textiles, which will be viewed by the general public at the event, as well as global business leaders, senior government officials, celebrities and VIPs.

    Expo 2020 Dubai will be held for 173 days, seven days a week, featuring 192 country pavilions and 60 live shows daily. It will be the first World Expo ever hosted in the Middle East, Africa and South Asia (MEASA) region. Expo 2020 is expected to attract 25 million visits, with 70% of visitors projected to come from outside the UAE.

    Find out more about the UK Pavilion here.

    Specific exhibition requirements

    The exhibition will sit in a number of vitrines which are display cabinets at hip height. Visitors are looking through glass into the vitrines as they walk up and down the maze.

    DIT is looking for contributions in the following formats that align with its themes:

    • Case study and imagery
    • Video content
    • Audio recordings
    • AR asset
    • Physical asset (maximum size allowed is 2m (length) x0.8m (width) x1m (drop)

    Please take into account regional requirements as well. The exhibition will be outside with warm temperatures (up to 50ºC) and the exhibition will be in English and Arabic.

    If you are interested in this opportunity, DIT would like to find out a bit more about what your company has to offer. Deadline for initial interest is 20 November 2019.

    Register your interest here.

  • 25-Oct-2019 8:56 AM | Anonymous

    Textiles Scotland, now part of UKFT, is undertaking a review of a range of National Occupational Standards for the UK fashion and textile industry, covering Manufacturing Sewn Products, Manufacturing Textile Products and Footwear, Leathergoods and Leather Production.

    National Occupational Standards (NOS) are the recognised standards that our industry works and trains by. They provide the foundation content of qualifications, training, apprenticeships and professional development across the UK.

    NOS are developed and reviewed by employers from across the industry to ensure they keep pace with changing industry needs. The last review of the standards took place in 2015 and we now urgently need to bring them up to-date and in line with industry practice.

    To this end, UKFT are leading a series of review meetings with employers across the four nations and conducting this online, open consultation.

    The open consultation is the chance for you to influence the standards and provide reassurance on whether they are fit for purpose as they are, or if they need to be changed.

    To complete the consultation, you will need to follow the link below and fill out the online survey. But please note, you do not need to read and comment on all the NOS units! We’re only asking you to read and comment on the ones that are relevant for you and your business. The deadline for feedback is 15 November.

    The documents should be self-explanatory, but if you have any questions please feel free to contact john.west@ukft.org or Celia.thornley@ukft.org.

    Please complete the relevant consultation below.

    Manufacturing Textile Products

    Manufacturing Sewn Products

    Footwear, Leathergoods & Leather Production

  • 23-Oct-2019 1:47 PM | Anonymous

    A no deal Brexit does remain a possibility, although the political environment and timing remains changeable. Textiles Scotland, part of UKFT, is inviting companies to join a webinar on 28 October or register to receive a free Brexit guidance checklist.

    The webinar and the UKFT Brexit Checklist provide companies with the information they need to plan for the impact of a no deal. The webinar will also allow companies to explore the various alternative outcomes and the impact they might have on fashion and textile businesses.

    Get the Checklist here.

    Register for the webinar here.

  • 10-Oct-2019 9:03 AM | Anonymous

    UKFT is holding FREE events in Scotland over the coming weeks to provide practical Brexit advice and support for UK fashion and textile businesses.

    Register for the FREE events using the following links:

    22 October: Edinburgh

    22 October: Hawick

    UKFT will outline the actions that companies should be taking to minimise disruption to trade, with a chance to ask questions on specific issues that affect their business. The events will cover both exporting to the EU and importing from the EU. UKFT will provide an update on the latest developments regarding:

    • Export Paperwork
    • Samples (Bringing in or taking out)
    • Export Tariffs
    • Import Tariffs
    • Outward Processing Relief (OPR)
    • Common Transit Convention
    • VAT (for importing or exporting)
    • CITES (The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora)
    • Transitional Simplified Procedures (TSP)
    • Generalised System of Preferences (GSP)
    • Labelling
    • REACH regulations
    • Standards
    • People & Workers’ Rights
    • Intellectual Property, Copyright and Trademarks
    • Public Procurement

    There will be a webinar on 28 October 2019: more details to be announced shortly.

    The seminars are part of a series of series of FREE events across England, Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales. These include:

    14 October: London

    16 October: Huddersfield

    21 October: Belfast

    21 October: London

    23 October: Northampton

    23 October: Manchester

    24 October: Cardiff

    24 October: Leicester

    25 October: Gateshead

     “There has been a glut of information on how businesses can prepare for the UK leaving the European Union but these events and resources have been developed specifically for the UK fashion and textile industry encompassing the key things our businesses need to know,” said Adam Mansell, CEO of UKFT. “We want to reach as many firms as possible to ensure we minimise disruption for our industry and it is ready to exploit any new opportunities leaving the EU may bring.”

  • 08-Oct-2019 10:02 AM | Anonymous

    Today the government has extended the list of fashion and textile products that will attract an import duty in the event of a no deal Brexit. The original list was published in March 2019 comprising 97 tariff lines and today this has been extended to 140, covering more product categories such as jumpers and extending the existing men’s and boys’ products into those for women and girls.

    Previously the list covered items such as men’s and boys’ jackets and it now includes women’s and girls’ jackets, as well as women’s trousers and women’s blouses. In some cases, the fibre type has been extended so originally the tariffs would only apply to women’s pyjamas made of cotton and manmade fibres but this has been extended to a wider range of fibre types.

    The temporary tariff regime will apply for 12 months.

    The government said it has made revisions to ensure that the preferential access to the UK market currently available to developing countries (compared to other countries) is maintained. It said the changes would enable UK supply chains to continue to operate smoothly and keep prices down for consumers.

    Adam Mansell, CEO of UKFT, said: “Whilst we recognise the need to protect imports from countries covered by the Generalised System of Preferences (GSP) which includes countries such as Bangladesh and Pakistan, announcing these changes 23 days before the UK is scheduled to leave the European Union leaves businesses with very little time to prepare. In the event of a no deal, it does nothing to help UK exporters which are facing an additional tariff bill of £870m when selling into Europe.”

    If the product to be imported to the UK is not on the list below, there will be no duty for the next 12 months. Products on the list below imported from countries covered by the GSP scheme will attract no duty either.

    The full list can be viewed here.

  • 03-Oct-2019 3:13 PM | Anonymous

    Exports of a range of fashion and textile products from the UK to the USA will be hit with a 25% tariff as part of the ongoing dispute between the USA and the EU over subsidies granted to both Boeing and Airbus.

    The list of products that will be facing a 25% tariff includes cashmere jumpers, anoraks, swimwear and bed linen. This is in addition to the normal duties which will apply.

    The USA has threatened to introduce the tariffs as early as October 17 2019. It has been confirmed that these tariffs will apply even if the UK leaves the European Union with or without a deal.

    Adam Mansell, CEO of UKFT, has called on both sides to resolve the 15-year old trade dispute as quickly as possible.

    “At a time when the industry is facing huge uncertainty over the impact of Brexit, it is devastating that one of our key non-EU markets has imposed such significant tariffs on products that have nothing to do with the aircraft dispute,” said Mansell. “Some of our leading manufacturers will be hit by theses punitive tariffs and that will undoubtedly affect jobs and investment.”

    Simon Cotton, chief executive of Johnstons of Elgin, the largest manufacturer cashmere knitwear in the UK, and a board member of UKFT, said these tariffs will have a significant impact on the UK knitwear industry.

    “The US is our third largest export market behind Europe and Japan,” he said. “This will have major impact on our knitwear business, as well as the whole of the UK knitwear industry. The US consumer has a great affinity with British high-quality knitwear and we urge all parties involved to come to an agreement quickly for the sake of British manufacturers and US consumers.”

    The Department for International Trade (DIT) said in a statement: “The UK government is clear that resorting to tariffs is not in the interests of the UK, EU or US. We are working closely with the US, EU and European partners to support a negotiated settlement to the Airbus and Boeing disputes.

    “We are also seeking confirmation from the WTO that the UK has complied fully with WTO rulings regarding support to Airbus, and should not be subject to tariffs.”

    UKFT is working closely with the Department for International Trade regarding the latest developments and will update its guidance in due course.

    Read the full details of the tariffs on products sold to the USA here.

  • 03-Oct-2019 3:12 PM | Anonymous

    Don’t miss your chance to register for events taking place next week to review a range of National Occupational Standards (NOS) and Modern Apprenticeships for the fashion and textile industry.

    Employers and stakeholders in Scotland are meeting in Glasgow on Tuesday 8 October to review the Footwear, Leathergoods & Leather Production NOS and on Wednesday 9 October to review the Manufacturing Textiles Products NOS.

    The review of these crucial benchmark industry standards will ensure that the qualifications meet changing industry needs.

    To register your interest in attending this events, please contact skillsandtraining@ukft.org

    Later this month, there will be a separate event in Edinburgh to review the Manufacturing Sewn Products NOS review / Modern Apprenticeship in Bespoke Cutting & Tailoring on Wednesday 30 October.

    Read more details below:

    Footwear, Leathergoods & Leather Production NOS review

    Date: Tuesday 8 October

    Location: MacRoberts LLP, Capella, 60 York St, Glasgow G2 8JX

    Manufacturing Textiles Products NOS review

    Date: Wednesday 9 October

    Location: MacRoberts LLP, Capella, 60 York St, Glasgow G2 8JX

    Manufacturing Sewn Products NOS review / Modern Apprenticeship in Bespoke Cutting & Tailoring

    Date: Wednesday 30 October

    Location: IoD Scotland, 10 Charlotte Square, Edinburgh, EH2 4DR

    Please find below details of the standards to be reviewed.

    Footwear, Leathergoods and Leather Production

    Manufacturing Textile Products

    Manufacturing Sewn Products

    Ahead of the meeting, please could you take some time to identify the areas that would be most of interest to you using the documents below and return via email.

    Footwear, Leathergoods & Leather Production

    Manufacturing Textile Products

    Manufacturing Sewn Products

    PLEASE NOTE: If you are unable to participate in these face-to-face meetings, you can still get involved by completing the online consultation sites for the review of the NOS suites. The details of the online consultation will be published shortly.

  • 01-Oct-2019 3:32 PM | Anonymous

    Textiles Scotland, part of UK Fashion and Textile Association (UKFT), is urging Scottish fashion and textile companies to help collate an industry response to the Migration Advisory Committee’s call for evidence on a Salary Threshold and Points-Based System.


    The call for evidence asks for individuals and organisations to contribute to enable the Government to define the future system of salary thresholds and the level at which they could be set.

    The existing salary to be paid for an occupation is set at the 25th percentile of the full-time earnings distribution measured using ASHE, or £30,000, whichever is higher but this leads to a wide range of thresholds depending on the occupation and there are a number of exceptions. Read more here.

    In September 2018, the Migration Advisory Committee published its report looking at EEA migrants in the UK. Within this report the MAC made a range of recommendations for the future immigration system including the recommendation to “Maintain existing salary thresholds for all migrants under Tier 2 (General)”.

    UKFT believes that the existing salary threshold of £30,000 is too high for vital roles in our industry such as sewing machinists and weavers.

    In the December 2018 White Paper on the UK’s future skills-based immigration system, the Government accepted most of the MAC’s recommendations, but the salary threshold recommendation was only partially accepted. The Government is engaging with businesses and employers as to what level salary thresholds should be set at.

    In its commissioning letter to the MAC, the Government has now asked the MAC to further look into the issue of salary thresholds. The commission sets out a range of potential options when setting a threshold for the MAC to consider including a single minimum threshold with some flexibility, a going rate for roles or a combination of the two.

    UKFT chief executive Adam Mansell said: “We are encouraging all businesses who rely on talented overseas workers to take this opportunity to make their voices heard by the Government about the true impact that these changes could have on their workforce and businesses.

    “Our online template features key questions from the call for evidence and should only take around 5 minutes to complete but will be essential in representing the effect of changes to the migration policy on our sector.”

    The survey is available here and UKFT will be submitting the responses to the Committee on behalf of the industry.

    The deadline for responses is 11th October. If you have any further questions, please email Tara.Hounslea@ukft.org or call 0207 843 9460.

    More details on the call for evidence are available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/salary-threshold-and-points-based-system-pbs-commission-call-for-evidence.

  • 26-Sep-2019 8:18 AM | Anonymous

    A one-stop-shop website to help young people discover the range of jobs available across all the creative industries, including fashion and textiles, is now live.

    DiscoverCreative.Careers is designed to help students and their parents, guardians and teachers find out more about the careers in industries including fashion, advertising, architecture, film and television, museums and galleries, performing arts and publishing – and the routes to them.

    The creative industries are growing three times faster than the UK economy as a whole and to meet the predicted growth, there is a need for more young people to choose a career in one of the UK’s most dynamic sectors. The new site will signpost users to the full range of jobs available to counter an historic dearth of good careers information for the creative sector.

    The UK Fashion & Textile Association (UKFT) has outlined a range of key job roles in the industry – what the job entails, what you might earn and what opportunities for progression in the sector there are – including garment technologist, knitting machinist and pattern cutter through to leather craftsperson, with more to come.

    “Recruiting the next generation of talent in the fashion and textile industry is essential,” said Adam Mansell, CEO of UKFT. “Recent research suggests that there will be 20,000 new jobs needed in the industry in the next few years. This is part of a wider programme that UKFT is undertaking to promote careers in the industry and demonstrate the wealth of opportunities available.”

    The initiative is part of the Creative Careers Programme being delivered by ScreenSkills, Creative & Cultural Skills and the Creative Industries Federation supported by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sports as part of the Government’s industrial strategy. The lead partners have worked with organisations covering the 12 subsectors of the creative industries to provide expert information on the range of jobs.

    By filtering searches according to individual interests, the website produces a personalised selection of potential roles. It then directs young people to job descriptions and case studies on the websites of the expert partners in the initiative and to live opportunities for work experience or workplace visits where available.

    Young people can save their unique results page, personalised to their own interests and talents, as their own learning resource.

    A dedicated part of the site provides teachers, careers advisors and educators with up-to-date statistics on creative careers, lesson resources and an address book of useful organisations.

    Employers are also encouraged to get involved by promoting opportunities for events or work experience and showcase the experiences of young people visiting creative businesses to inspire others.

    DiscoverCreative.Careers will form a safe and accessible network between industry, education and young people across the UK. The soft launch this week will be followed by further development work in response to the user experience of students, parents, teachers and careers advisers in coming months.

    Aimee Higgins, Director of Employers & Partnerships, The Careers & Enterprise Company, said: “DiscoverCreative.Careers is a fantastic resource for young people, parents and teachers to better understand the opportunities that the creative industries have to offer and forms part of a broader programme of activity with employers that will bring this information to life.  We are delighted to be supporting the industry to make these resources and activities available to schools, colleges and young people across England. We hope young people from all backgrounds are inspired to explore the exciting opportunities that the creative industries have to offer.”

    Seetha Kumar, Chief Executive of ScreenSkills which has led development of the pan-industry website, said: “The screen industries, like the rest of the creative sector, are keen to find and develop the next generation of talent needed to keep the UK a global leader.

    “Having a single point of entry for young people to explore the jobs available, many of which they may never have heard of, is a crucial first step in securing the skills pipeline. We have revamped all the job profiles on our ScreenSkills website over the last year and partners have done likewise to make sure there is up-to-date information available on all the career options.”

    Dr Simon Dancey, Chief Executive of Creative & Cultural Skills, said: “The team at Creative & Cultural Skills deal with enquiries about job roles and entry routes into the creative industries on a daily basis so we know how useful this vital one-stop-shop is going to be. The launch marks a critical moment for industry who face significant skills gaps in the coming years – we must work together to inform and inspire a much wider and more diverse group of young people into our workforce to ensure our thriving sector remains world-leading.”

    Alan Bishop, Chief Executive of the Creative Industries Federation, said: “Talented and creative young people can be found everywhere, but the information and opportunities that they need to embark on a career in the creative industries can be more limited. This is wrong, and it is critical that we work together as a sector to ensure that young people from all backgrounds are easily able to access the information they need.

    “Alongside the Federation’s work advocating the importance of creative education, we have a duty to inspire the next generation of creative talent. To this end, I am very pleased that the Discover Creative Careers site will launch as part of the Creative Careers Programme, and look forward to the impact that this crucial information source will have on our creative talent pipeline and on the futures of the young people themselves.”

    The industry-led programme which consists of a number of practical and sustainable activities including this brand-new online tool, aims to raise awareness of employment opportunities in the sector, reaching more than 160,000 students by 2020, with better careers information online and through careers advisers. It is hoped that around two million young people will be able to access better advice about pursuing a creative career.

    Many young people – and their parents, teachers and careers advisers – are unaware of the ways in which they could use their skills in the creative industries. The Creative Careers Programme aims to show that such careers are financially sustainable and have a comparatively low risk of automation. There are currently more than 77,000 vacant positions. However, 90% of positions are currently filled by people from more advantaged socio-economic groups.

    Partners who have created up-to-date content explaining career options for DiscoverCreative.Careers are the Institute of Practitioners in Advertising (IPA), Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA),Crafts Council, the UK Fashion & Textile Association (UKFT), the British Fashion Council, Design Business Association, Association of Photographers, Publishers Association, Museums Association, National Archives, UK Music, One Dance UK, Society of London Theatre/UK Theatre/The Stage, Contemporary Visual Arts Network, Academy of International Extended Reality and ScreenSkills.

    The site was devised by the digital team at ScreenSkills.

    Visit the website here.

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