Scottish Textile News
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.
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 email@example.com
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
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
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.
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.
HAVE YOUR SAY
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.
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.
Textiles Scotland is urging businesses to prepare for a potential no-deal Brexit on 31 October. The PrepareForBrexit website, delivered in partnership by Highlands and Islands Enterprise, Business Gateway, Scottish Development International, Scottish Enterprise and Skills Development Scotland, provides businesses with support leading up to the date.
Businesses can access tools to identify the risks of a no-deal Brexit and a checklist of essential actions to take in order to protect your business, supply chain and customers. Scottish SMEs can also apply for a £4k Brexit Support Grant to help manage the impact of Brexit.
Find more details and dates for upcoming Brexit webinars here: https://www.prepareforbrexit.scot
Dates have been confirmed for meetings with employers and stakeholders in Scotland to review a range of National Occupational Standards (NOS) and Modern Apprenticeships for the fashion and textile industry.
The NOS which support the roles for fashion and textiles in Scotland are currently under review, and there is now an opportunity to have your say about how they look. The review of these crucial benchmark industry standards will ensure that the qualifications meet changing industry needs.
UFKT (which now encompasses Textile Scotland) is the Sector Skills Body for fashion and textiles in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. One of our key tasks is to produce and maintain, with the help of employers in our sector, NOS suites, vocational qualifications and Modern Apprenticeship frameworks in Scotland. We also register and certificate Modern Apprentices.
NOS specify the standard of performance an individual must achieve when carrying out a function in the workplace, together with the knowledge and understanding they need to meet that standard consistently. Essentially NOS are benchmarks of good practice.
Recycling plastic into trainers, new developments in 3D and circular knitting processes and tackling sustainability challenges while building a brand were some of the issues that were under discussion at the Sustainability in Fashion conference at Dumfries House yesterday.
Textiles Scotland, which is now part of UKFT, was in attendance to hear from speakers including Patrick Grant, the British fashion designer and director of Norton & Sons, E Tautz and Community Clothing, as well as Walter Waehlt, director of advanced creation in apparel technologies at Adidas and Christiane Arp, editor in chief at Vogue Germany.
The conference is part of the the Future Textiles project, which is currently ongoing at stately home Dumfries House in Ayrshire and at Trinity Buoy Wharf in London through the Prince’s Foundation. The project was initiated by HRH The Prince of Wales to address the skills gap in the textile industry. Textiles Scotland held a number of important discussions with stakeholders in the industry during the day including HRH The Prince of Wales as part of its work to reinvigorate the skills landscape in Scotland.
The event was attended by key figures from the Scottish textiles industry including Ian Laird, managing director of Alex Begg and Margaret MacLeod, sales director of Harris Tweed Hebrides, as well as representatives from MYB Lace and Elizabeth Martin Tweed.
The UK Fashion & Textile Association (UKFT) is to review and update a suite of fashion and textile qualifications in Scotland, as part of the association’s mission to raise the skills and productivity of the people who work in the UK fashion and textile industry to the highest level.
UKFT has been awarded the contract to review the National Occupational Standards* for fashion and textiles and to extend the Fashion & Textile Heritage Modern Apprenticeship by Skills Development Scotland.
The project will see UKFT review and update the following qualifications:
National Occupational Standards
Manufacturing Textiles Products/Manufacturing Sewn Products
Scotland specific Modern Apprenticeships
Fashion & Textiles Heritage SCQF Level 6/7
Addition of a new Pathway - Bespoke Cutting & Tailoring
UKFT’s scope of work will include the development and review of the National Occupational Standards (NOS); the Welsh translation for NOS where required; Scottish Vocational Qualifications(SVQs) or alternative competency-based qualifications (CBQs) for use in apprenticeship frameworks; and the Apprenticeship Frameworks in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
Using the membership of Textile Scotland, now part of UKFT, from September 2019, the UKFT Skills & Training Team will be contacting key stakeholders to create working groups to review NOS Suites and to reconvene the recent and successful Steering Group in Scotland to lead on the Modern Apprenticeship development.
UKFT skills and training manager John West said: “This is a great development that will ensure that Scottish qualifications are up-to-date and relevant for the industry. We look forward to working with employers in the coming months.”
It comes as UKFT has expanded its skills and training team to tackle the pressing issue of the shortage of skilled workers in the UK fashion and textile industry.
UKFT has made rapid progress in addressing the UK fashion and textile industry’s critical skills gap since it was appointed as the Fashion and Textiles Industries Sector Skills Body (SSB) by governments in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland in November 2017.
In this time, the association has worked with the industry to develop 13 new apprenticeship frameworks in England including sewing machinist, pattern cutter, bespoke tailor, leather craftsperson, technical textile specialist and textile care operative, alongside a new Scottish Vocational Qualification (SVQ) for bespoke cutting and tailoring.
UKFT has launched a new Apprenticeship Skills Analysis for employers, designed to provide advice, simplify documentation, cut down on red tape and facilitate links with sector training providers.
The association is now the external quality assurance provider (EQAP) for 10+ apprenticeship standards to ensure consistency and quality for fashion and textile apprentices and their employers
It has also launched the UKFT industry recognition programme, to review and ensure sector qualifications are applicable and necessary.
UKFT has also been working to overcome barriers to take up including a shortage of End Point Assessment Organisations (EPAOs), increasing the size of the training provider network and addressing issues associated with non-levy procurement, funding allocation and appeals.
UKFT’s John West has also joined the panel that will develop the outline content for the new T Level for craft and design, which encompasses fashion and textiles.
* National Occupational Standards(NOS) are developed by Standard Setting Organisations (SSO) who consult with employers and other stakeholders across each of the UK nations, (Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and England). This consultation process allows any specific requirements to be considered by each nation and the result is a set of NOS that are suitable for use across the UK.
The NOS, which are set out in a common format, are approved on a four-nation basis and content is scrutinised by SQA Accreditation. Each NOS has a published date stating when it was approved, and the most current NOS are listed in this database. There is also an anticipated review date and this will be used as a guide to when they require reviewing and feedback from stakeholders is taken to influence when this is commissioned.
Scottish Enterprise is hosting a webinar on 12 September to outline the major opportunities for Scottish exporters in key sectors in the Polish market.
It will be presented by Cedric Fromont, managing director at Valians International, which supports Scottish Development International in partnership with OCO Global in Poland.
Cedric has 15 years’ experience in supporting businesses in their expansion in Poland and Eastern Europe, conducting more than 120 projects per year with teams based in Krakow, Warsaw and Gdansk.
Key facts about Poland:
Benefits for UK businesses exporting to Poland include:
To register for the webinar, please sign up here.
If you or employees in your company need financial support with essential items for their children, here’s a charity that could help.
Founded in 1853, FTCT has been supporting the children of UK fashion and textile employees for over 160 years.
About FTCT grants
FTCT grants provide support for families when they are struggling financially and can't afford to buy essential items for their children.
This could be because of an unexpected change in circumstances or a sudden gap in income. Or ongoing circumstances which put pressure on household finances, such as ill health or disability.
FTCT grants help to provide essential items for children aged 0-18 years. Items that can make a big difference to a child's wellbeing.
This could be a proper bed to sleep in, a working cooker for hot meals, a working washing machine for clean clothes or a school uniform that fits.
Grants can also fund mobility equipment, sensory toys or educational support for children with a disability or additional needs.
Martha and Deborah’s grant story
Martha (11) has Williams Syndrome, which means she has learning difficulties, concentration problems and other associated medical issues. Her Mum Deborah is the Managing Director of the underwear brand British Boxer's. Martha received a grant towards reading lessons over four years.
Watch Martha and Mum Deborah talk about the difference their FTCT grant has made here.
Can you apply?
To apply for an FTCT grant, the parent or carer must work or have previously worked in the UK fashion and textile industry for at least one year, within the last nine years.
Your children must be aged between 0-18 years. Sole traders, self employed or sub contracted staff might also be able to apply.
*Employees from across the sector fall in FTCT’s trade criteria, including any UK business which designs, sells, manufactures, services or distributes clothing, footwear, soft furnishings or fabrics.
Find out more
To find out more about FTCT grants, please visit their website www.ftct.org.uk or give their friendly grants team a call on 0300 123 9002.
Want to promote FTCT at your company?
FTCT are already working with a number of affiliated members, to promote their grants, including UK Fashion & Textile Association (UKFT), Textile Services Association (TSA), Textile Centre of Excellence (TCE) and the Lancashire Textile Manufacturers Association.
They are always on the look out for new companies and associations to work with. It is really simple to promote FTCT at your company and the team at FTCT can help you every step of the way., To find out more, please contact FTCT Director Anna by email, firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0203 667 7882.
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