Scottish Textile News
UKFT is the government-appointed Sector Skills Body for UK fashion and textiles, working to ensure the skills and productivity of people working in our industry of the highest level.
Last year UKFT led a review of the Manufacturing Textiles Products and Manufacturing Sewn Products National Occupations Standards (NOS) suites. The reviewed suits have now have been approved and published on the NOS portal.
John West, Director of Skills and Training at UKFT, said: “Thank you to everyone who contributed to the successful reviews, which will be the benchmark for all training provision in these areas for the next five years.”
UKFT put together national steering groups for the sector areas which reviewed, informed and updated the current competencies needed to carry out the manufacturing process for the industry. This will upskill the workforce and ensure the UK remains competitive against global competition in these vital areas.
The groups included representatives from leading employers and stakeholders in Scotland, Wales, England and Northern Ireland including O’Neills, Hunter Apparel Solutions, Mulberry, John Smedley, Melin Tregwynt, Lochcarron, British Footwear Association, John Lewis, Barrie Knitwear, First Corporate Clothing, Schuh, House of Bluebell, Alex Begg, Bute Fabrics, Johnstons of Elgin, Bow Leather and Muirhead.
To view the new Standards please visit https://www.ukstandards.org.uk/EN and search under the Business Sectors (Suite) tab.
XpoNorth’s FREE virtual conference takes place on 24-25 June, with a series of live talks encompassing global speakers in Film, Music, Writing, Heritage, Textiles, Trend Forecasting & Digital delivered over the two days. The event it is free and open to all, but registration is required.
Visit https://xponorth.co.uk/festival-programme for the full programme.
As it enters its sixth year, XpoNorth, Scotland’s leading Creative Industries conference and support network, has been reimagined as an immersive digital edition, but while the setup has changed, the high calibre of speakers has not.
Read the full details on the 2020 digital edition here.
The Small Business Grant Fund is now available to companies who occupy certain types of shared space but do not pay rates directly. You will be eligible for a grant of up to £10,000 if your business occupies office space, business incubators or shared industrial units and you lease the space from a registered, rate-paying landlord.
To be eligible you must also:
To apply for a grant please contact your local authority.
The Small Business Grant and Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant schemes will close for new applications on 10 July.
Full details here.
Textiles Scotland members and manufacturers can apply for 50 free face masks per company as part of a UKFT scheme to help the UK fashion and textile industry return to work.
The masks have been kindly donated by the Istanbul Apparel Exporters Association (İHKİB) and the Istanbul Textile and Raw Materials Exporters Association (ITHIB) as a gesture of goodwill and solidarity from one of our closest sourcing markets.
Nigel Lugg, Chairman of UKFT said: “We are grateful to our Turkish friends for this kind gesture. I know the industry is keen to get back to work and hopefully these masks will help manage that process.’’
Mustafa Gültepe, chairman of IHKIB, and Ahmet Öksüz, chairman of ITHIB, said: “As the COVID-19 Pandemic is affecting the lives of world’s people and harming the economies, please accept our donation of facemasks for your member companies as an expression of our solidarity with British companies. Being a partner to the same value chain of apparel and textile, we attach great importance to co-operate in all issues that the industry faces mutually.
“We believe, our deep and long-lasting business relations in fashion and textiles will enable us to recover these unprecedented days of the pandemic quickly.”
The masks are not PPE and have not met any performance testing. However, they are suitable for general protection at work.
The UK government says face coverings do not need to be worn in the workplace but employers should support their workers if they choose to wear one. You can find government guidance on face coverings here.
The masks will be distributed on a first come, first served basis, with preference given to Textiles Scotland and UKFT members. Please email email@example.com to apply.
The Scottish Government has today (21 May) published its COVID-19 Framework for Decision Making which lays out the Scottish Government’s decision making process and potential timescale for easing current restrictions.
The plan outlines four phases for removing Covid19 based restrictions. The full Framework can be read here.
Phase 1 states that where businesses are reopening employers should encourage staggered start times and flexible working. Phase 2 would see an easing of restrictions on non-office based working and Phase 3 would see the start of the opening of retail. Tourism would start to reopen across Phases 3 and 4.
The government have committed to reviewing whether it is safe to move to the next phase of the plan every three weeks. Phase 1 is not expected to start until the first review on 28th May.
A new online service to allow employers to recover Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) payments will be launched on May 26th.
The scheme will allow small and medium-sized employers, with fewer than 250 employees, to apply to HMRC to recover the costs of paying coronavirus-related SSP.
Employers will receive repayments at the relevant rate of SSP that they have paid to current or former employees for eligible periods of sickness starting on or after 13 March 2020.
Employees do not have to provide a doctor’s fit note for their employer to make a claim under the scheme.
The repayment will cover up to 2 weeks of SSP and is payable if an employee is unable to work because they:
Get ready to claim
What you’ll need;
You can claim for multiple pay periods and employees at the same time. The start date of your claim is the start date of the earliest pay period you’re claiming for. The end date of your claim is the end date of the most recent pay period you’re claiming.
Where an employer pays more than the current rate of SSP in sick pay, they will only be able to reclaim the SSP rate.
Employers can furlough their employees who have been advised to shield and are unable to work from home. Once furloughed, the employee should no longer receive SSP, where an employee has been notified to shield and has not been furloughed, the rebate will compensate up to 2 weeks of SSP from 16 April 2020.
The government today announced the new UK Global Tariff regime that will be applied to products imported into the UK from 1st January 2021. The tariffs will apply to imports from countries where the UK does not have a trade deal.
For the fashion and textile sector there are almost 1,200 tariff lines. Under the new regime 67% of these will remain complete unchanged. Virtually every single fashion line will remain at 12% and the vast majority of yarns and fabrics will continue to attract an import duty of between 4 – 8%.
A further 15% of fashion and textile tariff lines have been simplified with, for instance, the import duty on silk ties falling from 6.3% to 6% and the rate on bras falling from 6.5% to 6%.
In total 203 tariff lines will drop to zero, in the vast majority of cases this is on products where the UK has little or no UK manufacturing e.g. the import duty on silk yarn will from 4% to 0% and that on terry towelling fabric will drop from 8% to 0%.
Adam Mansell, CEO of UKFT said: ‘’UKFT campaigned vigorously against the last proposed UK tariff regime as it failed to provide UK manufacturers with a level playing field and at the same time threatened to increase the amount of very cheap, disposable fashion imported from overseas.
“We welcome the new UK Global Tariff regime precisely as it addresses our two fundamental concerns. Our UK manufacturing base has received assurance that it can continue to trade on an equal footing and while consumers will still be able to benefit from the duty free arrangements with countries such as Bangladesh, there is not going to be a huge influx of super cheap fashion with all the environmental damage that could entail. However, we also urge the government to reach a positive conclusion to the negotiations with the EU – a market that accounts for 76% of our exports and 35% our imports.’’
A full list of the new UKGT for fashion and textiles can be viewed here.
From today (Wednesday 13 May 2020) self-employed individuals whose business has been adversely affected by coronavirus will be able to apply for a Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) grant, worth 80% of their average monthly trading profits, up to a maximum of £7,500), paid in a single instalment.
If you are eligible you will be able to make your claim on a specified date between 13-18 May, based on your Unique Tax Reference number.
HMRC has assigned eligible self-employed individuals a specific date to apply on and this can be checked on HMRC’s online checker at any time here.
People will not be able to apply before their claim date but can make a claim after that day.
The claims process is simple, and those eligible will have the money paid into their bank account by 25 May 2020, or within six working days of completing a claim.
In order to make a claim you will require the following information:
Under SEISS, those who are eligible will be able to claim a taxable grant worth 80% of their average trading profits up to a maximum of £7,500 (equivalent to three months’ profits), paid in a single instalment.
You can check your eligibility using the new online checker tool. Once the online check is complete, those who are eligible will be given a date when they can submit their claim.
The claims service will open on 13 May and those eligible will have the money paid into their bank account by 25 May, or within six working days of completing a claim.
There is further guidance available on how HMRC will calculate payments here.
From tomorrow (1 May 2020), PPE purchased by care homes, businesses, charities and individuals to protect against Covid-19 will be free from VAT for a three-month period.
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