Ethiopia's textiles and clothing industry is undergoing major development, aided by the presence of a cheap, skilled and highly-motivated workforce. This surge has been helped by the country’s impressive economic growth over the past years. Ethiopia’s enormous export potential is made possible by the wide availability of raw cotton and other natural fibers and Ethiopia’s access to domestic, regional and international markets.
Ethiopia’s long history in textiles began in 1939 when, under Italian occupation, the first garment factory was established. The country’s current textiles industry encompasses spinning, weaving and processing. Ethiopia has five public textile factories producing mostly work-wear garments for the domestic market. Numerous privately-owned factories produce shirts, suits, work clothes and uniforms for national and foreign markets