The textile industry is one of Macedonia’s most developed economic sectors, and there are over 600 companies actively involved at various levels of production, employing over 40,000 workers and producing over €450 million worth of exports. Textiles contribute to about 12.45% of the industrial GDP (2.4% of Macedonia’s GDP), and represented 12.4% of country exports in 2016. The Macedonian textile industry, however, represents less than 1% of global textile exports worldwide.
Fair Wear Foundation (FWF) has been active in Macedonia since 2004. According to the latest FWF annual report, ten FWF member companies were sourcing from 21 Macedonian suppliers. FWF audits show some general areas of concern, of which the first is documentation. Records are often not kept properly, making it both difficult to assess if workers receive the benefits to which they are entitled, and how many hours they actually worked. A second, much larger problem concerns health and safety. Factory audits often uncover problems with fire safety, ranging from faulty or absent fire detection systems to a lack of fire safety training.
FWF will continue to provide updated information on Macedonia on its website and will update this country study on a periodic basis in the future.Download