Last year, BiH imported more than half a billion BAM worth clothing (524 million BAM), and almost 50 % of that clothes came from Turkey and China, according to the Indirect Taxation Authority of BiH (ITA BiH).
More than nine billion kilograms of clothing, with the value of 147.7 million BAM, was imported from Turkey, and 5.3 million kilograms of clothing, with the value of 100.8 million BAM, were imported from China. In the third place is Bangladesh with imports in the amount of 46 million BAM, followed by Serbia with 40.9 million BAM worth imports, and Italy with 38.5 million BAM. The list of the top ten importers also includes Germany, Austria, Cambodia, Vietnam and Morocco.
Bosiljka Dejanovic, the director of Sana Linea from Kostajnica, stated that the quality is the only weapon of the domestic production for the fight against import.
“That is commodity that is being sold in markets, and it is sold in large quantities, and we simply cannot compare with it. We are producing small quantities that are more expensive when it comes to work and used materials, so we are trying to be different. Our main aim is quality and we are trying to make clothes from natural fibers, well made, and available in different sizes,” she stated.
On the other side, the data we have showed the increase of imports of second-hand clothes. Last year, almost 3,500 tones of second-hand clothes were imported in the amount of 6.7 million, and majority of it in the last three years. Import from Germany is dominant, and it amounts to a total of 2.69 million BAM.
Murisa Maric, the executive director of the Association of citizens “Don” from Prijedor, which is dealing with consumer protection, stated that clothes that had been worn in the West a long time ago and were given to charity – are washed, packed and disinfected now and sent to our market.
“That clothes still has some quality, especially when it is coming from the West. It is much cheaper and much better for our citizens, because their purchasing power is weakened,” she said.
They, just like Dejanovic, noticed that an increasing number of consumers are turning to domestic brands, especially when it comes to underwear, shirts, suits and coats.
“However, regardless of how nice and good quality it is, the price dictates everything,” concluded Maric.