It just got faster—and cheaper—to produce in Mauritius.
In an attempt to get out ahead of any fallout from Brexit, the country is insulating its textile and apparel market with a new initiative to make the region more appealing to European customers.
Under the Air Freight Rebate, as known as the Speed to Market Scheme, the government is underwriting a 40-percent reduction in air freight costs to Europe via its national carrier, Air Mauritius. The measure covers exports from the African nation for two years, beginning April 1.
With this quicker freight option, the hope is that Mauritian factories will be better positioned to compete in the global sourcing market. It also positions them to help retailers and brands work closer to need—a pressing need in our fast-fashion world.
The textile and apparel sector employs 45,000 people and contributes 9 percent to the country’s GDP. Mauritius factories manufacture for brands like Calvin Klein, Tommy Hilfiger, Zara, Adidas, River Island and Topshop. In 2015, exports to Europe accounted for 40 percent of the country’s overall textile and apparel exports.