Phnom Penh, 13 March 2023 – Switch Garment project, co-implemented by GGGI, TAFTAC and Geres hosted an exhibition to showcase its mid-term achievement and to strengthen connectivity between clean energy service providers and garment manufacturers in Cambodia. The event took place at the premise of Textile, Apparel, Footwear & Travel Goods Association in Cambodia (TAFTAC).
The event was graced by H.E. Say Samal, Minister of Environment of the Kingdom of Cambodia and H.E. Carmen Moreno, the Ambassador of the European Union to Cambodia. More than 200 participants including the high officials and representatives of the Ministry of Environment (MoE), Ministry of Industry, Science, Technology & Innovation (MISTI), Ministry of Mines and Energy (MME), Ministry of Economy and Finance (MEF), international brands, garment manufacturers, energy service providers, financial institutions and development partners attended the event.
Switch Garment is now in its third year and via this event as an engaging platform, the project aimed to communicate the achievements with its key stakeholders including the policy measures, the energy audits and investment commitment made through the recommendations of the project. The event also brought together the garment manufacturing industries and energy service providers under the same roof to enable them to know their respective demand and service offerings.
Ms. Shomi Kim, Country Representative of GGGI, the lead implementer for Switch Garment said: ‘’To date, the project has conducted 50 energy audits, the most ever been conducted within a single project in Cambodia. Based on the energy audit results, we have walked our member factories through their energy consumption profile and measures to increase energy saving. As a result, we have secured almost 2 million USD investment made by the member factories which is an inspiring sign for the greening efforts being realized in the garment sector.’’
“The textile, apparel, footwear and travel goods sector in Cambodia provides over 800,000 direct jobs and needs to go green to remain competitive in the global value chains. Mr. Ly Tekheng, Executive Manager of TAFTAC, added, ‘’The high energy cost as well as lagging infrastructure, productivity, and logistic within the country has decreased the competitiveness of the sector. However manufacturers in here take sustainability as a competitive factor by reducing energy consumption, manufacturers can lower down the environmental footage of their supply chain and at the same time cut down the production cost. This would make the sector greener, sustainable, and more competitive than other markets in the regions.”
Mr. Patrick Renaud, Country Representative of Geres highlighted the added value of the matchmaking part of the event, that was also made possible thanks to the financial support of AFD (Agence Francaise de Développement): “The feedback of walkthrough audit triggered interest among many factories which now look into acquiring greener, more efficient and energy saving technologies. Today, the invited factory representatives were able to directly interact with selected providers of the main equipment used in the sector.”
European Union, one of the largest markets for Cambodian GFT products, has set energy efficiency as a key principle for shaping policies, investment decisions and, for the EU external action. The EU, the European Investment Bank and the European Member States contribute with over $25billion to support climate action in developing countries around the world, around one quarter of the global commitment of $100billion a year.
H.E. Carmen Moreno, Ambassador of the European Union to Cambodia said, “The European Union works with Cambodia in support of green growth and decent jobs. We contribute to the implementation of the national garment strategy by supporting garment factories to adopt sustainable energy practices and facilitate investment in clean technologies, which will enhance the competitiveness of the sector. EU’s “Global Gateway” contributes to more resilient and sustainable value chains around the world, and in Cambodia.”
Improving energy efficiency in the garment industry is in line with the Royal government of Cambodia’s long-term strategies to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050, according to Minister of Environment, H.E. Say Samal. He continued, ‘’Acknowledging the significance of the garment industries in Cambodia, the project is well designed to support the garment manufacturers to implement sustainable energy practices through policy and investment support.”
Switch Garment is a four-year project funded by the European Union through the EU SWITCH-Asia Programme. The project works on increasing the competitiveness of the Cambodian garment sectors and decrease the industry’s environmental impact through the adoption of sustainable energy practices and facilitating investments in clean energy technology.
Press Release: https://www.switch-asia.eu/news/matchmaking/
Mid-Term Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CEQ7BRmHV1M