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‘The Government must be made to see the whole picture’

Drapers’ interview last month (April 14) with business secretary Vince Cable was an important milestone in getting fashion on the political agenda, but there should be a word of caution.

Drapers’ interview last month (April 14) with business secretary Vince Cable was an important milestone in getting fashion on the political agenda, but there should be a word of caution.

Ministers like to see and be seen at glamorous fashion events and to engage with high-profile names like Mary Portas. However, they also now need to act on their promises to lend support.

Our industry contributes £37bn to the UK economy. It exports more than £6.5bn and remains an industry that continues to grow. 

Most of this is below the radar, not featured on TV or seen on catwalks. The unsung heroes of the fashion and textile industry are never seen. They are investors, risk-takers and wealth creators who are creating UK jobs.

The UK Fashion & Textile Industry Association’s event at the House of Commons last month – where 120 industry representatives met MPs to discuss what issues the industry might need help with – is the start of the UKFT’s efforts to have a better and more open dialogue with government.

We must make the Government see the whole picture so they will commit to helping growth. Only then can we continue to create jobs and opportunities across the country.

  • Paul Alger, Director 0f international afffairs, UK Fashion & Textile Industry Association (UKFT)

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